Complete Streets for Canada

policy and design hub for building safe and inviting streets for all

Hamilton, Ontario

Complete Streets Approach

The Hamilton Urban Official Plan (2014) uses the term in Chapter C, City-Wide Systems and Designations, under Section 4: Integrated Transportation Network.  In a subsection entitled "Urban Design and Complete Streets," it states:

  • "The road network shall be planned and designed to: a) be shared by all modes of transportation; b) maximize safety for all uses; and, c) minimise lifecycle environmental impacts," (C.4.2.12)


The City of Hamilton also has a Pedestrian Mobility Plan (2012), which was written to be consistent with a future Complete Streets policy that would consider all users.  It is based on routine accommodation as an implementation framework, creates a hierarchy of pedestrian zones based on land uses, and offers a handbook of design solutions, all of which one would expect to find in a Complete Streets policy.   It acknowledges that a comprehensive policy is the end goal; for example, in its Routine Accommodation section, it states: 

  • "In the Pedestrian Mobility Plan, routine means “a series of actions regularly followed”, while accommodation means “the process of adapting or adjusting to making pedestrian mobility safer and more interesting” (this is consistent with Complete Streets approach).   Routine accommodation occurs when City operational, infrastructure, planning, legislative and communication decisions also improve pedestrian infrastructure when streets, services and roads are maintained and renewed throughout the City.    “Routine Accommodation” is a process where changes to improve pedestrian streetscapes utilizing a range of solutions are regularly employed on each and every project as a matter of course.   This decision making process is designed to implement changes during reconstruction, ongoing maintenance, streetscape enhancements or other capital projects.    Decisions are appropriate, objective, traceable and defensible," (Section E.4, p. 12).  


The City of Hamilton's Transportation Master Plan is currently under review, and a Complete Streets Policy is one of the topics under discussion.