A City of Saskatoon report recommends expanding the number of speed cameras and school zone locations. The report will be considered on Monday by city council’s transportation committee.
Liam Richards / Saskatoon StarPhoenix
The City of Saskatoon could soon embark on a dramatic increase in speed cameras at more locations.A city hall report that will be considered by city council’s transportation committee on Monday recommends expanding the use of speed cameras, known commonly as photo radar.Under a provincial pilot program that began in 2015 under the direction of Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI), two cameras rotated through five school zone locations and five high-speed locations. SGI announced last fall that the program had become permanent.The report suggests applying for two additional cameras to rotate through the existing spots that could be in place by the end of June, if the committee and then council endorse the plan. SGI would also need to approve additional cameras and locations.“If additional (speed camera) locations are added, it is unknown how quickly these locations can be installed and move through the familiarization period before revenue, if any, is generated,” the report says. “It is also unknown how many (photo speed enforcement) locations will receive approval for installation.”The report also recommends adding another two cameras to rotate through eight additional school zone locations that could be in place by the end of the year.The city must consult with the Saskatoon Police Service before any locations can be included on an application to the province.Under the strategy, the city administration would continue throughout the rest of the year to identify additional high-speed locations as well as “arterial” street locations for cameras. Those could be in place next year on roadways like Eighth Street, 22nd Street and College Drive.SGI’s pilot project was limited to three cities: Saskatoon, Regina and Prince Albert. Saskatoon yielded the lowest net revenue of $1,073,364. Regina netted $2,741,073 and Moose Jaw $1,085,192, the report says.SGI’s deadlines for cities to apply for expanded speed enforcement this year are March 30 and Sept. 30.When the Saskatchewan Party government announced it was making the speed camera program permanent, the formula for distributing revenue was also changed.Under the pilot project, the City of Saskatoon received 34 per cent of the revenue. Under the altered formula, the city will receive 10 per cent of revenues, the report says.The remaining revenue will go to SGI for program costs (55 per cent), to the province’s general revenue fund (25 per cent) and to a provincial traffic safety fund (10 per cent).Council wrote to the province in the fall to protest the revenue change.Council has struggled in recent years to address concerns from residents about speeding. A recent pilot project to test speed humps in four locations produced results that were deemed “inconclusive” by the administration.The administration is also expected to table a report later this year on the possibility of lowering the speed limit on residential firstname.lastname@example.org/thinktankSKRelated