Transportation & Environment Services


What is a Crosswalk?

A crosswalk is the area on a road where pedestrians have the right (with certain responsibilities) to get from one side of the road to another.  Crosswalks exist at all intersections of streets whether or not there are crosswalk lines and signs or sidewalks.  Crosswalks also exist everywhere else on a road where crosswalk lines and signs are in place.

As a Motorist, you have responsibilities at Crosswalks:

  • You must let a pedestrian cross the street at all crosswalks, whether the crosswalk is marked or not.You must not pass another vehicle when that vehicle is stopped at a crosswalk for a pedestrian.
  • You must not park on a sidewalk or crosswalk or within 5 metres of a crosswalk
  • When you are turning at an intersection you must yield to pedestrians legally in the crosswalk even if they have a Green light at a signalized intersection.

As a Pedestrian, you have responsibilities at Crosswalks:

  • You are allowed to cross the street only at a crosswalk You must not suddenly begin crossing the street in a way that does not allow a motorist to yield to you.  
  • When facing a signal for a pedestrian you must enter the crosswalk only when the signal shows the white outline of a person and not when the orange outline of a hand is shown blinking or steady.  The blinking outline of the hand will often start when you begin walking along a crosswalk but you have enough time to cross the street before other vehicles can move as long as you started crossing when the white outline of a person was showing.
  • Remember that motorists are people and the best way to have motorists know you are going to cross the street is to ensure they see you.  Tips include:
  • extending your hand and wait for them to see you,
  • wearing light colour clothing or reflective material, especially when it is dark,
  • not relying on motorists paying attention road markings or signage.


  • 1300 lanes in the City are painted with crosswalks each year.  A further 2000 other markings (i.e. arrows) and 350 KM of lane lines are also painted each year.
  • $80,000 is spent on traffic paint each year
  • The City switched to water-based from oil-based paint a few years ago.  More environmentally friendly but less durable.
  • We are constantly searching for more efficient and effective materials, equipment and processes.
  • $20,000 was approved by Council this year for installation of more durable materials to replace some paint, with a focus on crosswalks.
  • $10,000 invested in a grinding machine in 2011 to install markings below asphalt surface, reducing wear from plows and traffic.  Example is in front of Harbour View High School on Douglas Avenue
  • A 48 foot crosswalk costs $5 in paint to mark, whereas the more durable materials cost closer to $50.
  • Paint typically lasts less than one year, durable markings can last for several years.
  • Nine areas trialed with durable markings in 2010. Trials continue in 2011.
  • Most crosswalks are painted in mid-August so they are bright for the new school year given the less than one-year life of most paints.
  • Industry standards used to assess if community-requested crosswalks should be marked with signs and lines.
Pedestrian and Traffic Management

Transportation and Environment
(506) 658-4455
175 Rothesay Avenue

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