What Exactly is an Urban Clearway? A Clear Explanation

Have you ever been in a traffic jam so built-up that you wondered if you would even make it 10 yards in a hour’s time? For those who have ridden in an automobile they have most likely experienced the headache of being stuck in traffic. It’s never an enjoyable moment and the only power one has is to wait it out.

An urban clearway was designed specifically for high traffic urban areas where cars seem to be stacked upon one another. With little roadway and room to maneuver, the purpose was to prohibit parking alongside certain roadways and streets: this in turn, opens lanes as best as possible.

Urban Clearway Explained

an urban clearway explained

To figure out whether or not a certain street has a designated urban clearway sign all a person ought to do is look. They are traffic signs and will read “Urban Clearway” on them accompanied by a symbol representing prohibition. The sign will also give specific times and days where parking is prohibited.

For example, a sign may read, “URBAN CLEARWAY MONDAY TO FRIDAY AM 8.00-9.30 PM 4.30-6.30”. There aren’t any special signs on an urban clearway other than reminder signs along the way. If one violates the rules of the clearway, it isn’t uncommon for them to get ticketed or towed.

Can A Vehicle Stop Along the Curb for a Moment?

The laws regarding stopping at the curb to pick up someone or to drop them off differ by country. Sometimes the limitations are set on one side of a particularly important stretch of road, while other times the restrictions for parking and stopping fall on both sides of the road where a curb is present. Let’s look at some of the Commonwealth nations and their laws regarding the urban clearway.


When mustnt you stop on a clearway in the land down under? Unless one is driving a taxi or a bus, they aren’t allowed to stop on a clearway on certain times of the day. Any other vehicle seen stopped or parked (unless under the context of emergency) during these restricted times are subject to tow.

The United Kingdom

The urban clearway highway code in the United Kingdom is fairly similar to those in Australia. The main difference is that vehicles are allowed to stop only as it pertains to picking up or dropping off a passenger in a busy urban area, regardless of their designation. The purpose of an urban clearway is to help with the flow of traffic, especially during the peak commuting hours of the day. This is why it is common to see certain clearway restrictions on weekdays as opposed to weekends.

Where Would You See an Urban Clearway?

In an urban area brimming with people and a lot of things going on–highly congested areas. You wouldn’t see an urban clearway in the country or alongside a place littered with abandoned petrol stations and grubby terraces. One is going to see them in highly congested areas. When the road gets clearer, they will see an end of urban clearway sign to notify them that the restrictions have ceased.

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