Ontario to make 110 km/h speed limits permanent on 6 highway sections
Posted March 29, 2022 7:44 am.
Last Updated March 29, 2022 5:05 pm.
Speed limits on six sections of Ontario highways will soon be set to 110 kilometres per hour on a permanent basis.
The increased speed limits on stretches of 400-series highways will be set in stone as of Apr. 22. The province launched a pilot project in 2019 to test the higher speeds on a trial basis.
Ontario Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney made the announcement on Tuesday and says the sections of highway were carefully selected based on their ability to accommodate the higher speeds.
“We chose these sections based on their infrastructure and their design as those (are) sections that can best accommodate these increased speeds,” Mulroney said.
Six sections of Ontario highways where 110 km/h speed limits will be made permanent:
- Queen Elizabeth Way – from Hamilton to St. Catharines
- Highway 401 – from Windsor to Tilbury
- Highway 402 – from London to Sarnia
- Highway 404 – Newmarket to Woodbine
- Highway 417 – from Ottawa to the Quebec border
- Highway 417 – Kanata to Arnpior
Two sections of provincial highways in cottage country will also see their speed limits increased on a trial basis. The province will boost speeds to 110 kilometres per hour on Highway 400 from Mactier to Nobel and on Highway 11 from Emsdale to South River.
Minister Mulroney says there hasn’t been a bump in accidents during the pilot period. She explained, “…there was no impact, no increase in collisions so we believe that what we’re doing is responsible, we can increase speed limits in a safe manner.”
The pilot project included public consultations on the effect of the new speed limits and the province says the majority of respondents were in support of the increased speeds. As part of the project, the Ministry of Transportation posted enhanced signs and safety messaging on the designated routes.
“We will certainly explore extending it to other sections of highways across the province”, Mulroney said.
The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) revealed statistics last week that revealed speeding and aggressive driving deaths in the province reached a decade-high in 2021.
OPP Sgt. Kerry Schmidt says 81 people lost their lives in speed-related incidents on Ontario highways last year. There were 315 total deaths on Ontario roads in 2021, a three per cent increase from the year before.
Earlier this month, the province announced a 30-year plan for public transit and highway expansions across the Greater Toronto Area and Golden Horseshoe, with plans to spend $82 billion in the next decade.
As part of the plan the province intends to complete the controversial Highway 413 and Bradford Bypass. The proposed highways have received their share of criticism with detractors claiming the new routes will have significant environmental impact without saving much time for drivers. The province also intends to widen bottlenecks on Highways 400, 401, 403 and the QEW.
With files from The Canadian Press