Main page content begins here

No idling in front of schools and hospitals

Council has passed bylaw 15982 (an amendment to bylaw 14600), prohibiting vehicles from idling in designated areas outside of schools and hospitals. The bylaw takes effect January 1, 2013.

What is idling?

Idling is a bad habit that wastes fuel, adds to pollution and can contribute to health problems. Unnecessary idling costs Canadians millions of dollars every year and it's a major contributor to climate change. Idling your vehicle less will save you money on fuel, improve air quality in your community and reduce emissions contributing to climate change.

We are committed to making sure Edmonton is one of the cleanest, greenest cities worldwide by keeping its air quality at a high rating – above acceptable levels as measured in previous years.

What you need to know about the bylaw

  • The City will place signs about the bylaw in City right-of-way areas, where available, in front of schools or hospitals. Schools and hospitals will also place their own signs in the no-idling zones.
  • The bylaw takes effect when the temperature rises above 0° Celsius.
  • Under the bylaw, drivers cannot idle for more than five minutes within any thirty minute period when parked in an area designated as no idling.
  • The bylaw applies only to participating schools and hospitals.
  • Vehicles licensed to provide public transport such as school buses and taxis, emergency vehicles and vehicles transporting medically fragile people are exempt from the bylaw.
  • This initiative will help create a healthier environment for school students and staff and hospital patients, staff and visitors.

What can you do to reduce idling?

  • Download our Be Idle Free Resources to start your own Be Idle Free campaign.
  • Be more aware of the amount of time you idle.
  • Reduce "warm-up" idling to 60 seconds before driving away, just make sure your vehicle's windows are clear. Wheel bearings, steering, suspension, transmission and tires are only warmed when the vehicle is moving. It typically takes at least five kilometres of driving to warm up these components.
  • Turn your engine off if parked for more than 60 seconds during reasonably warm weather (above -10°C).
  • Avoid using a remote car starter during reasonably warm weather (above -10°C).
  • Stuck in traffic, using a drive-thru, picking up someone at school or waiting for a train to go by? Shut off the vehicle! Ten seconds of idling uses more fuel than restarting your engine.
  • Consider using other ways to get around, such as public transit, walking, biking or jogging instead of driving.

We also provide City employees with information on how to reduce vehicle idling. Currently, we have the Fuel $ense Program for fleet vehicles and the ETS Bus Idling initiative.

The Way We Green

The City's long-term environmental strategy for a sustainable community.

For More Information

City Environmental Strategies

9th Floor Edmonton Tower
10111-104 Avenue NW
Edmonton, AB
T5J 0J4


In Edmonton: 311
Outside Edmonton: 780-442-5311


End of page content. Please choose between the following five options:

Back to main menu Back to current page menu and content View current page breadcrumb Back to site search Continue to page footer content