Centre for Road Safety

More city streets safer

The Sydney CBD 40km/h speed limit area was expanded on 18 April 2016 to improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists. Most city streets with high pedestrian traffic are covered by a 40km/h speed limit, including those near major CBD train stations and bus interchanges.

The expanded 40km/h zone covers the central CBD and is bound to the:

  • North by Alfred Street and the existing 40km/h in The Rocks area
  • East by Macquarie Street, College Street (to Liverpool Street) and Elizabeth Street (to Eddy Avenue)
  • South by Railway Square
  • West by Quay Street, including the Paddy’s Market precinct.

With more than 90 per cent of daily trips within the Sydney CBD made on foot, the expanded Sydney CBD 40km/h zone benefits the high volume of pedestrians within the busy central area.

The larger 40km/h zone also benefits pedestrians in the evenings, when many people are about late at night. Our crash data shows:

  • There were 12 pedestrian fatalities and more than 1400 pedestrian injuries between 2005 and 2014 in the expanded 40km/h CBD area
  • Nearly 40 per cent of crashes in Sydney’s CBD happen between 6pm and 6am
  • A vehicle that hits a pedestrian at 50km/h is twice as likely to cause a fatality as the same vehicle travelling at 40km/h

The expanded 40km/h zones also help drivers by eliminating multiple speed limit changes on many high-traffic routes.

Pedestrians benefit

New signs, pavement markings and a communications campaign support the expanded Sydney CBD 40km/h zone. We will also monitor the effectiveness of the expanded area to balance safety and traffic needs.

All road users should obey the rules

Pedestrians should always use crossings and only walk when the pedestrian light is green. Stop, look, listen, think before stepping out onto the road and don’t be distracted by mobile phones or music.

Bicycle riders should ride predictably, and obey traffic lights, stop and give way signs.

The Sydney CBD Motorcycle Response Team, a group of highway patrol officers dedicated to improving pedestrian safety, will continue to operate within the Sydney CBD.