Pedestrian Signals

Transportation Engineering Services is responsible for installing and maintaining traffic signals in the City of Greater Sudbury. We make pedestrian safety a high priority.

What do the symbols mean?

Walk symbol




The "walk" symbol means you may begin crossing the road. Remember to watch for motorists making right and left turns. 

Flashing Don't Walk symbol



The "flashing don't walk" symbol means there is sufficient time to finish your crossing safely. If you have not yet started, do not start to cross the road.

Steady Hand symbol



The "solid don't walk" symbol means do not enter the roadway.





If there is a pedestrian push button, push it to activate the "walk" symbol. If there is no pedestrian push button, wait for the "walk" symbol.

pedestrian information sign





Why doesn't the "walk" symbol stay on until I'm completely across the street?





The "walk" symbol lets pedestrians know when to begin their crossing.

When you are partway across an intersection, you may see the "flashing don't walk" symbol. Complete your crossing as there is enough time to do so.

Why doesn't the "walk" symbol come on every time the traffic signals turn green?

The pedestrian "walk" symbol will only be displayed if the push button is activated. Pedestrian signals give people more time to cross than regular traffic signals.

Why do I have to wait for the "walk" symbol after I have activated the push button?

When the pedestrian push button is activated, a message is sent to the traffic signal controller that there is a pedestrian waiting to cross the street. A delay may be encountered while waiting for the traffic signals to change to minimize interruption to traffic on a major street.

How do I safely cross from a right turn island to the curb when there are no pedestrian signals? Do vehicles have to stop for me?

In most cases, the crossing between a traffic island and the curb is not controlled by traffic signals. This means that pedestrians must yield the right-of-way to turning vehicles.

Why do I hear bird sounds at some intersections?

The City of Greater Sudbury, in partnership with the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, has installed Audible Pedestrian Signals (APS) at some traffic lights. APS work in conjunction with existing pedestrian traffic signals. They use a combination of bird sounds : a cuckoo for north-south crossings and a peep-peep for east-west crossings to help visually impaired pedestrians cross the road in safety.

What is a pedestrian countdown traffic signal?

Ped countdown





A pedestrian countdown traffic signal provides a digital display which counts down the number of seconds remaining to complete a safe crossing of an intersection. The countdown begins as soon as the "walk" symbol appears.

Tips for crossing safely:

  • Check for a pedestrian push button. If there is one, push the button.
  • Once the "walk" symbol is displayed, look both ways before starting to cross.
  • You do not need to run but do walk briskly.
  • Watch for vehicles turning right or left.
  • Pedestrians have the right-of-way at traffic signals but should always be alert to vehicles failing to yield.
  • Look for pedestrian information signs at major intersections.
  • At intersections with traffic lights but no pedestrian traffic signals, pedestrians may cross if they are facing a green light.
  • Do not cross the intersection on a flashing green light or a left-turn green arrow.

If a pedestrian traffic signal or push button does not operate as described, please call 3-1-1.

For more information, please contact:

Co-ordinator of Traffic and Transportation Engineering Services

1800 Frobisher Street, Sudbury, Ontario P3A 5P3