Downey Road Transportation Improvement Study

The City is making improvements to Downey Road from Woodland Glen Drive to Teal Drive as part of efforts to implement the Council-approved Cycling Master Plan. Improvements include the addition of bike lanes and traffic calming measures.

Downey Road Study Map

Initiated in 2013, the Downey Road repaving project was deferred so that the City could gather more community feedback after local residents expressed concerns about traffic speeds and community safety along Downey Road. In July 2014, Guelph City Council directed staff to report back with a design for Downey Road that includes bicycle lanes and traffic calming elements, as well as a recommendation on the classification of Downey Road. For more information about the history of this project, visit the Background tab below.

The City of Guelph hired Paradigm Transportation Solutions Ltd. to conduct a thorough transportation study of Downey Road to address community concerns and fulfill Council’s direction. Staff presented a preferred traffic calming design option for Downey Road to Council in September 2016, and Council approved four of the five recommendations. Visit the Study tab below for more details about the study.

Construction of the Council-approved recommendations will be completed in phases. The first phase will be completed in 2017, with further phases in subsequent years. Traffic control plans for the intersection at Downey and Niska road are still being considered. Details about construction, including future open house and feedback opportunities, will be posted in the Latest updates feed below.


Downey Road is a two-lane arterial road that runs through the Kortright Hills West community, west of the Hanlon Expressway. A number of transportation-related projects have influenced this community over the past decade, including the Hanlon Creek Business Park development, the Niska Road Bridge Environmental Assessment and the MTO-led Environmental Assessment for the Hanlon Expressway improvements. Throughout these projects, the City has collected traffic data including traffic counts, operating speeds and truck volumes.

In 2013, the City engaged the residents of Downey Road in selecting a design for the Council-approved inclusion of bike lanes on Downey Road between Niska Road and Teal Drive. The City held two open houses and a community walk-about to collect feedback on proposed road designs and to hear concerns about road traffic.

Local residents voiced concerns about plans to remove on-street parking to allow for bike lanes, and described ongoing traffic issues in the neighbourhood. Primary concerns include traffic volumes, traffic speed, heavy truck traffic and the need for pedestrian crossings.



The objectives of the Downey Road transportation improvement study include assembling and reviewing transportation data for the Kortright Hills West community in order to:

  • Estimate the traffic implications for the road classification of Downey Road under various scenarios:
    1. closing Downey Road to thru-traffic;
    2. downgrading Downey Road classification to a local road;
    3. and status quo (Downey Road as an arterial road).
  • Recommend the appropriate roadway classification of Downey Road in considering the role of Downey Road within both the neighbourhood and the greater community at large.
  • Propose options to reduce speeding and enhance the pedestrian and cyclist experience on Downey Road; for example, pedestrian refuge islands, on-street parking and other measures.
  • Engage the public throughout the study to collect their input and include them in the process.

The consultants will host two stakeholder meetings and two open houses to engage the community and collect input for the study. See the Engagement tab for more details.

Study documents

10 MBDowney Road transportation improvement study, final report October 2016Report presentation to Council, September 6, 2016, page 90 (PDF 22.6 MB)


Open Houses

Community members will be invited to participate in two workshop-style open houses to provide input on traffic and safety issues affecting their community, and to provide feedback on proposed traffic calming measures and road designs.

Information about open houses and opportunities to provide comments will be posted in the Updates tab.
4 MBDowney Road Public Workshop #2, June 20162 MBTraffic calming participant handbook, June 20161 MBDowney Road traffic calming workbook, May 20163 MBDowney Road open house presentation, May 20164 MBDowney Road study area map25 kBDowney Road comment sheet, May 2016

Stakeholder engagement

Stakeholders from local agencies and organisations including Emergency Services, Guelph Transit and local school boards will be invited to participate in the open houses alongside the public.

For more information

Please contact our study team members if you have questions, comments or would like to be added to the study mailing list.

Allister McIlveen
Manager of Transportation Services
City of Guelph
519-822-1260 extension 2275
Jim Mallet, P. Eng
President and Project Manager
Paradigm Transportation Solutions Limited
519-896-3163 extension 102