- Categories :
Kitchener Continues Its Ambitious Vision Zero Policy
By: Deutschmann Personal Injury & Disability Law (Lawyers) | Published 03/21/2023
The city of Kitchener is taking bold steps to make its streets safer for all road users with its Vision Zero strategy. The plan, which was adopted in 2018, is a comprehensive approach to eliminating traffic-related fatalities and serious injuries on Kitchener's roads by 2027.
The Vision Zero strategy recognizes that traffic fatalities and serious injuries are preventable, and that traffic collisions are not inevitable. The plan focuses on creating a safe and equitable transportation system that accommodates all modes of transportation, including walking, cycling, public transit, and driving. The plan is built around five key pillars: safe speed, safe roads, safe vehicles, safe people, and safe data.
The first pillar of the Vision Zero strategy is safe speed. The city recognizes that speed is a leading factor in traffic fatalities and serious injuries. The plan aims to reduce speeds on Kitchener's roads through a combination of engineering, education, and enforcement measures. The city has implemented traffic calming measures, such as speed humps and traffic circles, on residential streets to reduce speeds. The city also works with the police department to enforce speed limits and educate drivers about the dangers of speeding.
The second pillar of the Vision Zero strategy is safe roads. The city recognizes that road design plays a significant role in the safety of road users. The plan aims to design roads that are safe for all users, regardless of their mode of transportation. This includes improving pedestrian and cycling infrastructure, such as sidewalks, bike lanes, and crosswalks. The city also works to improve road design through its road reconstruction program, which focuses on improving safety for all road users.
The third pillar of the Vision Zero strategy is safe vehicles. The city recognizes that the design and maintenance of vehicles can contribute to the safety of road users. The plan aims to promote the use of vehicles that are safe for all users, including pedestrians and cyclists. The city also encourages the use of newer vehicles that are equipped with advanced safety features, such as automatic emergency braking and lane departure warning systems.
The fourth pillar of the Vision Zero strategy is safe people. The city recognizes that education and awareness are essential to promoting safe behavior on the roads. The plan aims to educate road users about the dangers of risky behavior, such as distracted driving, impaired driving, and not wearing seatbelts. The city also works with schools and community groups to promote road safety education for children and youth.
The fifth and final pillar of the Vision Zero strategy is safe data. The city recognizes that data is essential to understanding the causes of traffic collisions and identifying areas where improvements can be made. The plan aims to collect and analyze data on traffic collisions to inform road safety improvements. The city also works to improve data sharing among different departments and agencies to ensure that road safety is integrated into all city policies and programs.
Overall, Kitchener's Vision Zero strategy is a comprehensive approach to road safety that recognizes the importance of collaboration across different departments and agencies. The plan acknowledges that no single action can solve the problem of traffic fatalities and serious injuries and that a multifaceted approach is necessary. The city's commitment to creating a safe and equitable transportation system for all road users is commendable and should serve as a model for other cities looking to implement Vision Zero strategies.
You can read Kitchener’s Vision Zero Policy in whole here on their website.