We're updating the city's transportation master plan and we need your help!

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Project Background

The City of Waterloo is undertaking a study to review and update the community's transportation master plan. The objectives of the study are to:

  • Develop a guiding transportation policy document
  • Provide more travel options;
  • Describe how to develop a community that is less reliant on cars for travel
  • Describe how the city can leverage recent investments in light rail transit (ION) and active transportation to encourage citizens to walk, cycle and use transit more

The revised plan will provide an up-to-date strategy for moving people and goods around the city now and into the future. With Waterloo changing and growing, the transportation system needs to adapt to who we are today and where we want to be in 25 years.

Please consider sharing your thoughts and comments on the future of transportation in the city through this page or by emailing WaterlooTMP@ptsl.com.

Thank You for Your Feedback in Phase 1!

Last summer, we asked community members where they go in Waterloo, what transportation modes they use, and what challenges they experience when moving around the city. You can read What We Heard in our Phase 1 Engagement Summary.

Phase 2 documents now available!

Our team has developed draft policy directions and network plans for the city’s future transportation system. The updated material includes information related to:

  • Guiding Philosophies and Strategies such as Complete Streets, Vision Zero and Emerging Technologies
  • Network Planning and Design guidance for active transportation and roadways; and
  • Operations and Maintenance strategies for winter maintenance of active transportation facilities and speed limits in the City.

A Technical Summary of the Phase 2 policy and planning work is now available in the Document Library.

Phase 3!

Although this project has experienced a few delays with city staff taking on other priorities during the pandemic, Phase 3 is continuing and a draft of the Transportation Master Plan (TMP) report will be uploaded this fall. The current target for completion of the TMP is late 2020/early 2021

Project Background

The City of Waterloo is undertaking a study to review and update the community's transportation master plan. The objectives of the study are to:

  • Develop a guiding transportation policy document
  • Provide more travel options;
  • Describe how to develop a community that is less reliant on cars for travel
  • Describe how the city can leverage recent investments in light rail transit (ION) and active transportation to encourage citizens to walk, cycle and use transit more

The revised plan will provide an up-to-date strategy for moving people and goods around the city now and into the future. With Waterloo changing and growing, the transportation system needs to adapt to who we are today and where we want to be in 25 years.

Please consider sharing your thoughts and comments on the future of transportation in the city through this page or by emailing WaterlooTMP@ptsl.com.

Thank You for Your Feedback in Phase 1!

Last summer, we asked community members where they go in Waterloo, what transportation modes they use, and what challenges they experience when moving around the city. You can read What We Heard in our Phase 1 Engagement Summary.

Phase 2 documents now available!

Our team has developed draft policy directions and network plans for the city’s future transportation system. The updated material includes information related to:

  • Guiding Philosophies and Strategies such as Complete Streets, Vision Zero and Emerging Technologies
  • Network Planning and Design guidance for active transportation and roadways; and
  • Operations and Maintenance strategies for winter maintenance of active transportation facilities and speed limits in the City.

A Technical Summary of the Phase 2 policy and planning work is now available in the Document Library.

Phase 3!

Although this project has experienced a few delays with city staff taking on other priorities during the pandemic, Phase 3 is continuing and a draft of the Transportation Master Plan (TMP) report will be uploaded this fall. The current target for completion of the TMP is late 2020/early 2021

Guest Book

Please share your comments about the city's transportation master plan here. 
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Good Morning,I know what I've missed the map addition window, but I'm hoping there can be some dialogue around a pedestrian bridge connection between Kaufmann and Snyder Flats. We see a natural active connection between these two public spaces, which would effectively double the trail/outdoor space for community members. This has been discussed between our fellow condo members at 460 Woolwich St. and we would be happy to assist in any required fundraising for this project.

JonHendel about 2 months ago

A suggestion - how about counting the vehicles and bikes using the temporary bike lanes? I did and it supports my comment that there was no common sense used in the decision to put in bike lanes. I made two return trips this week (Monday and today) that involved travel from University to Gage during rush hour. Both days, there were ZERO bikes in either lane on any of the four trips. ZERO bikes! There were however MANY cars. Score: MANY cars: ZERO bikes. How can this make sense? Maybe someone should check the numbers!!!

Michelle Sept 2 months ago

I can't imagine who thought this was a good idea let alone one that should be experimented with. Westmount is already narrow for a four lane roadway and if anything, it should be widened to accommodate traffic by adding left and right turn lanes at intersections like Glasgow to allow traffic to flow. And instead, we are looking at bike lanes? Seriously!I strongly oppose the temporary bike lanes when the majority of those that use this major north-south artery drive a vehicle. Turning Westmount into a two way road instead of a congested four lane roadway shows a complete lack of common sense. If you use a bike, find a different, less busy and safe way to travel north-south than a busy artery like Westmount.

Michelle Sept 2 months ago

I have no issues with bike lanes as long as they are one are separate from the car lanes, two not on major arterial roads, and three they are safe. The plastic markers, flower boxes and white lines are not safe on major arteriaal roads I also believe as a cyclist they need to be used not just a few people or else they are a total waste of money. You only have to look at the epic fail of the temporary bike lanes. I would also like to see more mixed use trails instead of sidewalks and boulevards. I would also like to see a proper study done once that answers the following questions one can you use Alternative transportation such as bike for travel, two where do you need to go, and three would you use them? In addition, when you rip up Erb Street as you did five times, you could have had the forethought to widen the street to allow for Alternate transportation. The repair of streets should take into account bike lanes and be an addition not a subtratction. The existing bike lanes on King Street, University Avenue, Columbia Westmount are simply not used because they go nowhere! I would like to see an interconnected set of trails that will provide people with the maximum benefit on secondary roads. As a cyclist I do not feel safe on arterial roads. Also, please stop the war on the car, I drive an electric. This is the future of automotive and please set up some charging stations in areas. The congestion you have increased with the bike lanes has made people angry and divided the community. Also, please do proper metrics and stop the survey monkey and social media surveys and hold proper community engagement sessions. The transportation staff should be fired. Remember councilors you need to do a better job and respond to your constituents. You represent us and you do not rule us.

JoLogicCommonSense 2 months ago

I support bike trails and lanes even though as a driver, I definitely spend more time going from point A to point B ( Albert St., Erb St.,Westmount Road). It will take time for people to adjust and to experience the possibilities offered. Over time I expect to see more people using electric and motorized aids and seniors trying out scooters as well as more bicycles in the specified lanes.In nice weather it can be easier to get to the downtown to enjoy the enlarged walking and patio areas.In winter though, I can't imagine the lanes will be accessed unless they are kept clear of snow and the city sidewalks shovelled as well. Each piece needs to be completed to support the overall transportation goal.

A.Schnarr 3 months ago

More on the Bike lanes, Has anybody from the City actually gone out during the day on Belmont Ave, King St N in Waterloo and Westmount Road???These roads were 4 laned years ago to handle the increased traffic and guess what? Traffic has increased substantially since then and what does the City do? Close lanes for Bikes to help with emissions? I travel Westmount Rd and Belmont Ave fairly regularly and have Never seen a bike except on Belmont Ave yesterday and guess where it was? the sidewalk.....To-day I had the pleasure of being in a line-up of cars from University Ave to Columbia St. All those cars idling on a hot day and not a Bicycle in site! Lots of unnecessary Emissions. The City has spend millions to fight emissions then pulls this stunt? very Clever. How can these lanes possibly be justified at the expense of slower traffic and how are Emergency Vehicles to navigate all the snarled traffic for the sake of a hand full bikes??? I do think you seriously need reconsider.

ed sauder 3 months ago

Regarding bicycle lanes:- I see very few people using the lanes while automobile backups appear to be increasing causing the use of more gasoline. Therefore, the cost per use MUST be very high, notwithstanding the cost and impact of using more fuel. Travelling around town yesterday I witnessed only two bicycles, one of which was using the lane and the other was driving on the sidewalk ( along Westmount). On Northfield, Over the years, I could count on one hand bikes using the lanes where the walking path was being used by bike riders.Since moving to Waterloo, some 50 years ago, I have witnessed a significant improvement in hiking trails, which we used extensively riding our bikes. These trails have improved since then, making them more accessible to get around town. In conclusion, Notwithstanding safety issues, I fail to see the wisdom of creating bike lanes on major arteries. - lack of use by cyclists - reduced lanes for automobiles - traffic backup due to reduced lanes- increased fuel consumption - tax payers money having to pay for construction, maintenance and snow clearing.George MacAskill

George MacAskll 3 months ago

This email concerns the new bike lanes in Waterloo. I live in the north west end of the city and travel east on Columbia frequently. The bike lanes with the white posts erected for cyclists are very rarely used, although there is some use in the U of W area. The recent positioning of the black and orange pylons/posts placed on Erb, Bridgeport and Westmount are absurd. Traffic is much lighter in the summer with schools closed, families on vacation and the Covid 19 pandemic. In a few months when life returns to normal, these lanes closed to vehicles will cause long lineups of traffic as well as much idling of vehicles which is poor for the environment. Congestion will become a nightmare during rush hours. What kind of municipal planning is this? I will also comment on the redesign of the downtown area. Frankly, it is dreadful! ...... with the Ion tracks on King, reduced parking on King, no left turns at many intersections, Willis Way closed to vehicles, now pylons on Erb and Bridgeport, etc. I make a point of avoiding downtown Waterloo unless I absolutely must be there. I understand that if a resident lives downtown and can walk to retail/restaurants/etc. the changes may suit, but, as a senior who doesn't live in the downtown core, the changes are discouraging for travelling there.

Phyllis Selberg 3 months ago

Bike lanes will never work. I don't want to encourage anyone to take to two wheels in the middle of winter and slip under the traffic. Most places don't have showers so cycling in hot weather is not practical. A lot of adult cyclist don't wear a helmut. These temporary lanes are ridiculous....we already have to dodge these around construction sites so lets double the number of these and block more lanes of traffic.NOT!The majority of cyclists do not pay attention to the rules of the road with not stopping for stop signs and doing those 90 degree intersection turns which endangers both drivers and pedestrians as two examples. Night cycling without any lighting is another challenge for drivers. To date I have not seen any bike initiative that would encourage cycling by car drivers and the current number of cyclists does not justify the current expenditures. Let us go to zero additional spending until we are able to get some of the covid spending under control. When you see the shortfalls in revenue the cities and region is facing along with the additional costs coming from education one can only imagine how much they will be looking to get from the taxpayer and please remember there is only one taxpayer whether it is the city,the region, the province or the federal government.

jtborman 3 months ago

Please make Waterloo more bike and pedestrian friendly. Bridge Street, between Northfield and Eastbridge has practically become a highway due to a long stretch of road, with half of it four lanes, with nothing to discourage speeding. Children who live in Colonial Acres go to the elementary schools in Eastbridge, which involves crossing at Bridge Street. Even with the traffic light there it is very dangerous. And it's loud like a highway. The lanes should be reduced to two with a boulevard in between, and wider bike lanes on Bridge Street. Also, we should convert to electric buses for the environment and to reduce noise. Please consider reducing further roads across Waterloo to max 40 km/hr, for safety, and enforce!

Arinas 3 months ago

I think we should plan to convert to electric buses.

seangoggin 8 months ago

Instal a pedestrian scramble at University and King St. to make right/left turns from cars easier and safer for pedestrians. Not sure if this would result in more car build up between signal changes.

Mark 8 months ago

You want us to "describe how to develop a community that is less reliant on cars for travel". Good luck that won't happen.I have to wonder if these educated planners have noticed that there are more walkers than cyclist in the City of Waterloo. If not, maybe they should get out of their "ivory towers" and start walking or are they too busy driving their cars to work, just like those who will make the final decisions the new transportation master plan. Waterloo Region, is not Europe. We are not cyclist. We rely on our cars to get us from point A to point B. If you want to improve the moving of people then convince GRT to improve their dis-functional transportation system. Stop wasting taxpayers money on bike lanes, with the replacement of the "flower planters" on Albert St because cars & trucks are running into them. Stop with those posts, for the bike lanes, on Columbia St. as they are being replaced because cars and trucks are hitting them. The snow plow will also do their thing in removing those posts. If you want to improve things in this city, why not improve you by-law enforcement. First, get the students off our area streets. If they don't want to pay for the parking at the college or university, then let them take the LRT or bus. Improve your dis-functional enforcement of snow removal. One officer in December and 2 in January and February lets get serious. With respect to changing the flow of certain streets in Waterloo, I realize that streets such as Bridgeport Rd, King St. etc are regional roads, but reducing Bridgeport Rd, the only major access to Waterloo off the expressway is just shy of stupidity. For once stand your ground. You ignored the business people in the Waterloo core when you permitted the Region to reduce the number of lanes on King St and decreased the number of parking spots. You want us to describe" how the city can leverage recent investment in light rail transit (ION)..." Forget it. I will never give up my car. I have better things to do than take over one hour to get from home to Conestoga Mall when I can drive it in less than 15 minutes. Yes there are those who rely on GRT and the ION but the vast majority don't. As I said previously, maybe GRT should review their dis-functional system.

Totally fed up 11 months ago

The City should continue to discourage the use by motorists of streets designated as "local" in the current Transportation Master Plan "TMP" as cut-through opportunities by proactively planning for the use of proven traffic calming principles and associated measures implemented by city planners from other urban areas in their TMPs. It is vital for the health of our residential neighbourhoods that intra-city motorized vehicular traffic in the TMP continue to be encouraged to flow from local neighbourhoods, to minor and major collector roads, and then onto the major arterial/regional roads, and to limit opportunities for such traffic to infiltrate local streets. The re-classification of "local" streets as "collector" roads to manage congestion on such arterial/collector roads, or increasing acceptable volume levels on local roads to greater than the current 2,000 cars per day in the current TMP, should be resisted as options in the new TMP since these measures would significantly effect the liveability and walkability of our residential neighbourhoods. This issue is particularly acute for the Uptown residential neighbourhoods of Mary-Allen, Albert McGregor and Uptown West which are more prone to cut-through traffic due to the grid-like structure of their streets. (Waterloo's more recently planned suburban areas make use of crescents and dead ends to keep non-local traffic to the main collector/arterial road by design, although unforeseen cut-through and volume issues can still arise there too). Key guiding principles should be established for the TMP at the outset to ensure that the liveability/walkability score of all residents, including low-density residential neighbourhoods, remains high rather than placing the needs of auto commuters first. The City's current traffic calming policy needs to be updated.The trend toward favouring alternative forms of transportation by the City's planners (public transportation with the ION/bus route, cyclists, skateboardeers, pedestrian, scooter, etc.) is highly encouraged to continue as pivotal to the updated TMP. The key transportation-related issues associated with cut-through, non-local vehicular traffic are increased volume which results in potentially increased speeds and decreased safety for pedestrians/cyclists etc. in areas designated as low-density residential areas under the zoning bylaw set forth in the City's current Official Plan. Excess speed in such residential areas could be effectively addressed I believe by implementing a city-wide 40 kph limit on all local streets as put forth by Mayor Jaworsky, down from the 50 kph (unless otherwise posted) currently in effect. Reduced speed in residential areas will increase safety. Traffic calming measures to address volume, speed and safety issues need to be proactively planned for in the revised TMP and holistically applied in order to be effective (as opposed to the current adhoc approach) with standards created and implemented to ensure all residential environments are protected and the safety of pedestrians and those using alternative forms of transportation is paramount. These measures will help the City reach its goal of reducing residents' reliance on the auto and will help to retain Waterloo's reputation as great urbanized place in which to live.

wschlumb 12 months ago

It is currently difficult to travel East - West on the Northend of the City by bike. It would be great if the Lexington MUC/Hillside trail network could be connected via MUC along Weber to Parkside Ave. We would love to quickly get from Eastbridge/RIM park to McCormick CC or even to the YMCA by bike but currently biking on Weber to Albert or Parkside is uncomfortable for me on bike - even though I am an experienced and confident cyclist.

JillianS 12 months ago

Hi! I think Albert, north of Columbia could easily be narrowed to two lanes, with protected bike lanes added to the sides. Especially near it connecting to Weber, a narrowing could allow the creek next to it to be widened, to meander more. The creek could be restored to a more natural state to increase flood protection and to create ecological habitat and more connection between people and nature.A protected crosswalk for the Laurel Trail where it crosses Columbia is sorely needed as it sees a lot of foot and bike traffic going to and from the university and Columbia has a lot of high speed car traffic.As others have stated here, just painting a line doesn't make for a safe bike-lane. It needs to be protected from car traffic and it needs to be plowed in winter.Thanks!

Jonas about 1 year ago

As a commuter, I commute every day to Hamilton to Waterloo to support a parent with Alzheimers in the evening. I am concerned that bike lanes are being put on major arterial roads. I too ride my bike on the weekends at home for short trips. I do not feel safe on majpr arterial roads when riding my bike and either take a dedicated bike path or side streets. A painted line will not protect you from heavy traffic. The half lane half baked Dawson street solution is really dumb. With heavy congestion on major arterial roads and infrequent cyclists using bike lanes. The Erb street Bridgeport road bike lanes are a joke. They have been hijacked and I do not see any bikes. The bike lanes should be on trails or secondary streets where traffic is not so busy.I do not support bike lanes on major arterial roads. The down town bike lanes on king street are really dumb and are a hazard. You cannot see traffic or bikes with a stop sign in at an intersection. \Also, I think the transportation plan is not forward thinking enough. If electric vehicles are going to become prevalent, where are the charging stations? Where is the plan for autonomous vehicles as well?

JoLogicCommonSense about 1 year ago

I fully support bike lanes and trails, but quit doing it at the expense of our already congested traffic lanes. It took several minutes to drive through the congestion of two laned Erb street on a Saturday, and meanwhile not one cyclist using the lane that was hijacked for their use.

Kevin R about 1 year ago

Union Street is very wide and should be rebuilt with bike lanes that are separated from traffic. Union Street is currently very wide, which results in very fast moving traffic. It is very uncomfortable when walking and biking. It is also a convenient route into Midtown from Belmont Village and Margaret Avenue. The City needs to work with the Region to improve Weber Street, as there are long distances between pedestrian crossings and the multi-use trail doesn't even continue into Waterloo from Kitchener.

YKF about 1 year ago

I would like to see trails such as Spur Line granted right of way with vehicles having stop signs, particularly on lesser side streets. In particular the crossing at William St E/Willow St, Allen St E, John St. E, Roger St, Guelph St., and Wihelm St. Ideally crossings would be raised and textured at these locations. Engineering Standards should see that pedestrian refuges (like those at Hillside/Laurel trail crossings on Weber and University) are wide enough for a bike + trailer and long-tail or bakfiet style cargo bike - this is currently not the case. I would like to see no Right Turns on Red at intersections with bike boxes (in particular Bridge St./Lexington and Lexington/Davenport) and pedestrian and bike scrambles at intersections like Davenport/Lexington (where the eastbound Lexington MUC ends at Davenport).

JillianS about 1 year ago