On August 11, 2015, the City begins a four-week pilot of a new traffic improvement measure called the Advisory Driving Speed System. The test will be conducted in the westbound lanes of Whitemud Drive between 111 street and 159 street.
Data from passing cars is collected from technology buried in the road then processed to determine if an adjusted speed is required to improve traffic flow. Reduced speed suggestions are influenced by a number of factors including traffic speed, traffic volume, weather, road construction and collisions. The recommended advisory speed will be displayed on roadway signs.
Drivers are encouraged to slow down to the recommended limit but it is not mandatory and will not be enforced. The posted speed limit on Whitemud Drive is not under review and remains at 80 km/hr.
The purpose of asking drivers to slow down is to get people where they want to go more quickly, safely and easily. The technology is leading edge and has been used successfully in many jurisdictions including Lethbridge, Washington State, Minnesota and Florida. All of these cities have seen a marked improvement in safety and congestion levels, reducing both collisions and significant traffic delays.
The Advisory Driving Speed is a project conducted in conjunction with the University of Alberta's Centre for Smart Transportation.