The Phoenix City Council voted in December to reduce the speed limit along 15 stretches of the city’s roadways, including several spots in North Central (photo by Kathryn M. Miller).

At its Dec. 6 meeting, the Phoenix City Council voted unanimously to approve the reduction of speed along 15 stretches of Phoenix roadways. Twelve of the changes were made due to traffic and road conditions — whether based on Complete Streets Policy or to create a consistent speed limit for the corridor — and three were made for record-keeping purposes, where the current speed did not match the current ordinance.

Twice annually, the Phoenix Street Transportation Department does a comprehensive review of Phoenix City Code with regards to local speed limits. In fall 2023, department staff proposed the changes that Council approved.

Changes in the North Central area include the following reductions from 35 mph to 30 mph based on Complete Streets’ context sensitive speed limit policy: Hatcher Road, from 19th Avenue to Central Avenue; Osborn Road; and 12th Street from Indian School Road to Mountain View Road.

According to the city’s website, the goal of its Complete Streets Policy is to create a more sustainable transportation system that is safe and accessible for everyone. Complete streets provide infrastructure that encourages active transportation such as walking, bicycling, transportation choices and increased connectivity. Through the policy, the primary focus of street design will no longer be solely on the speed and efficiency of automobile travel, but on the safety and comfort of all users of the public right-of-way (ROW).

Within the policy, “context sensitive” means that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to design. It reads in part, “Flexibility enables projects to be tailored to the specific needs of each community with regards to their surrounding land uses and street character, allowing for the selection of facilities and amenities best suited to the needs of each community.” Read more at

Other North Central changes include a reduction from 45 mph to 40 mph to create consistent speed limit for the following corridors: Lincoln Drive, 800 feet east of Ocotillo Road to 32nd Street; 24th Street, Montebello Avenue to Lincoln Drive; and 32nd Street, Arizona Canal to Lincoln Drive.

To learn which other streets have reduced speed limits, or to dig deeper into the studies behind the changes, visit


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