Safer Speeds 2024

Roads, Parking & Transport

Safer Speeds For Our Community

Safer speeds will be introduced throughout Timaru District around schools, urban developed areas, and the Timaru CBD.

As a result of the Speed Management Plan that was approved by Timaru District Council and The New Zealand Transport Agency: Waka Kotahi earlier this year.

This plan prioritises the safety and wellbeing of community members by targeting kura (schools) and other high-risk locations as indicated by public feedback and conducted research while maintaining travel journey efficiency. By implementing these changes, we aim to enhance road safety and create streets where people feel safe to walk, ride, cycle, scoot, drive, and access public transport.


The first stage to implement this plan is to reduce the speed limits arounds schools by introducing a 30km/h permanent or variable speed limit for urban schools throughout the district. Research shows that speed limits in school zones are most effective between 300-500m long. Drivers tend to slow down if the zone is between these lengths, we took this into consideration when developing the speed limit zones.

While urban schools will be reduced to 30km/h, this will vary from rural and state highway facing schools. Our rural schools will receive a 60km/h or 80km/h permanent or variable speed limit due to a lower volume of active transport used in these areas.

Schools that face our state highways will need to wait for reduced speeds on roads that are controlled by NZTA, such as Timaru South School and Roncalli that are both adjacent to Craigie Ave.

The schools with variable speeds will be equipped with electronic signs flashing the reduced speed during school drop-off and pick-up times, when students are most at risk.

These speed reductions are crucial for our community; research undertaken within New Zealand and Australia shows that if a person walking is hit by a car travelling at 50km/h, the chance of survival is 20%, compared to if a person is hit by a car travelling at 30km/h, the chance of survival increases to 90%.


Urban and industrial fringes. The plan also includes a key focus area to manage the speed on roads in the urban and industrial fringes. This is to cater for development, that has already occurred or will occur over the period of the speed management plan, in the district and to reduce the approach speed of vehicles entering the townships on local roads. This allows speed reductions on urban or industrial fringe roads to either 50km/h, 60km/h or 80km/h depending on the level of development. Our local roading team have determined the speed limit as required to achieve a safe and appropriate speed limit using local knowledge and Waka Kotahi’s Speed Management Guide and Mega Maps.


Already developed urban areas with a high number of active users, in this case it is the extension of the 30km/h speed limit within the Timaru CBD to support locals and cruise ship visitors. This will reduce the risk to active users (like walkers, cyclists, and scooter users) on the road and promotes a safer environment.

All new speed signs are planned to be installed by July 1st 2024.

Click on the link below to access the full document of map images showing the affected areas.

Last updated: 08 Apr 2024