What is the City of Waterloo’s Transportation Master Plan? Why does it need to be updated?

A Transportation Master Plan (TMP) sets a vision for transportation in the City. The process to develop a TMP starts with a review of the current transportation system, how it is working and where areas for improvement are needed. The TMP also reviews best practices and considers emerging trends to identify travel needs in the future. Ultimately, the TMP will identify a series of actions that the municipality can take to address walking, rolling and cycling, road, and transit needs in the City. 

The City is looking to update its existing 2011 Transportation Master Plan.  Since 2011, there have been several improvements made to facilitate better transportation within the City.  Building on the previous TMP, this Plan will look to review and update specific aspects to ensure there is a multi-modal transportation system that plans for growth to the year 2041 and reflects the goals and objectives of the provincial Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe (2017). Specifically, the TMP looks to: 
1. Ensure the transportation network is accessible for all ages and abilities to meet the future needs of the City of Waterloo 
2. Meet the goals and objectives of the City’s Strategic Plan and Official Plan 
3. Improve road safety for all users through complete streets and vision zero principles and practices
4. Support the Regional Transportation Master Plan and the new ION system 
5. Consider linkages to the City’s Asset Management Plan

What is the process for the Transportation Master Plan update?

The Transportation Master Plan update will follow the Municipal Class Environmental Assessment master planning process and will be developed in three phases. 

Phase 1: Determining the State of the Transportation System Today – will explore the existing conditions of the transportation system. What is working well, what needs to be improved, and what can we learn from others are questions the City will explore. (February 2019 – July 2019) 
Phase 2: Moving the System Forward – will identify a series of options to continuously improve transportation systems in the City (July 2019 – October 2019) 
Phase 3: Future Transportation Opportunities - will reflect the final recommendations to advance transportation in Waterloo(November 2019 – April 2020) At each stage in the process, the community will have opportunities to share their ideas, view and inputs to help shape the final Transportation Master Plan.

Does the Transportation Master Plan include transportation outside of the City of Waterloo?

The Transportation Master Plan will focus primarily on improvements to the transportation system within the City boundary. There maybe considerations made to advance transportation options across the region as appropriate.

What improvements have been made since the last Transportation Master Plan?

Since the previous plan, they City has made improvements to the city transportation network including widening and reconstruction of Columbia Street West, extending Laurelwood Drive, and implementing various on-road bikeways, multi-use trails, shared streets, wayfinding and road crossing improvements. Simultaneously, the Region of Waterloo has widened Ira Needles Boulevard and University Avenue, completed streetscape improvements on King Street. The Region has also completed the ION - rapid transit link between Waterloo, Kitchener and Cambridge. The LRT service will launch in the spring of 2019, with eight transit stations located within the City of Waterloo.


Will the plan look at cycling and pedestrian issues and solutions or will it focus only on cars and transit?

The TMP will focus on the most effective ways to move people and goods within the City, following a complete streets approach. This will include looking at all forms of travel including walking, rolling and cycling.

How can I get/stay involved in the Transportation Master Plan engagement process?

o  Sign up for project updates on the “Sign Up” tab on https://www.engagewr.ca/transportation-master-plan-looking-ahead

o  Drop by one of the upcoming pop-up events – dates and locations coming soon.

o  Participate in the online survey (https://www.engagewr.ca/transportation-master-plan-looking-ahead)

How will my input be used?

In the early stages your ideas and inputs will be used to shape the overall understanding of the current issues and opportunities facing transportation in the City as well as help to form a vision for the Transportation Master Plan that reflects the Waterloo community. In the later stages, your input will be used to identify the most appropriate actions to be included in the final Transportation Master Plan.

How can I stay informed of future updates?

Sign up for project updates on the Sign Up tab on https://www.engagewr.ca/transportation-master-plan-looking-ahead

Who can I contact if I have questions?

Chris Hodgson, Senior Project Engineer, Transportation Services, City of Waterloo and Gene Chartier, Vice President, Paradigm Transportation Solutions are listening and can address any questions you may have. Please send questions to waterlooTMP@ptsl.com or you can leave a comment on https://www.engagewr.ca/transportation-master-plan-looking-ahead.