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Calgary communities could slow to 40 km/hour

Coun. Shane Keating putting forward a motion on McKenzie Towne in new year

A Calgary city councillor is preparing to make a motion that would allow one community to lower its speed limit to 40 km/h

Metro File

A Calgary city councillor is preparing to make a motion that would allow one community to lower its speed limit to 40 km/h

Several Calgary communities are hoping to slow down drivers on community roads – and for one neighbourhood the answer might be around the corner.

In the new year, Coun. Shane Keating will be putting forward a motion to have administration work with the community of McKenzie Towne, where residents have shown interest in changing the speed limit to 40 kilometres per hour.

"As a community association the only thing we have to do is change the speed signs, I don't know if there's anything the City of Calgary police department has to do," said Jaydel Gluckie, the McKenzie Towne Community Association President.

Keating explained there would be a big investment into awareness, policing and even signage to change a community's speed limit.

"There has to be some fairly massive public engagement on this and have a real buy-in from the complete community," said Keating.

Gluckie said he's afraid that because the streets are so narrow, if someone jumps out in front of the vehicle, cars have less time to spot them and stop.

"The streets of McKenzie Towne are very skinny...if there's a bus coming on one of the routes, even though it's a major route, you have to pull over." he said. "I don't think I drive 50 kilometres down the street anyways."

Last week Okotoks announced it would be moving to 40 km/h zones in residential areas. Airdrie has had a 30 km/h regulation in place for nearly 30 years and Jodi Morel with SlowdownYYC congratulates these communities.

"I think it's a fantastic thing," Morel said. "I think it's a challenge for a city the size of Calgary to do it because of the cost."

Morel said they've tried lowered speed limits in Edmonton communities as well – and after a year most opted to keep the lower limits.

Coun. Druh Farrell said she hopes the initiative doesn't have to be piecemeal as many of her Ward 7 communities have been waiting for drivers to slow down, too.

"Communities are desperate for it," said Farrell. "I would say almost every community in my Ward would be interested…let's do it city wide."

Communities like Chinook Park, Kelvin Grove and Eagle Ridge, along with Mount Royal and  Acadia, have been looking for calming measures since 2006.

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