School zone sign

Calgary city council has voted in favour of standardizing the hours of school and playground zones. (CBC)

Calgary city council has voted to change the times during which drivers must slow down for school and playground zones.

The times for all of those marked zones is now 7:30 to 9 p.m. MT.

The City of Calgary will put decals up at school and playground zones over the next few weeks.

That effort is expected to cost $157,000.

However, the City will also put up new signs in those zones next year, at a cost of more than half a million dollars.

The decision to change the times of the zones comes after a one-year pilot project aimed at sorting out what would improve driver awareness when entering school and playground zones.

City administration suggested the current system, which is school zone hours in effect from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and playground zones in effect from 8:30 a.m. until one hour after sunset, is confusing.

When not in effect, the speed limits in both zones rose from 30 km/h to 50 km/h.

Supporters of the change said a person's chance of surviving being hit by a car rises from 20 per cent to 90 per cent when the speed limit is lowered from 50 km/h to 30 km/h.

Decals will start being distributed immediately and once the decal is on a sign, the new rules are in effect for that zone.