20mph on residential streets

07/11/2012 at 3:02 pm | Posted in Cycling | Leave a comment
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Congratulations to Birmingham City Council; the councillors have unanimously backed a phased programme of introducing 20mph zones on residential roads, with consultation to ensure they meet the needs of local communities. This is normal for  many cities in Europe.

Balsall Heath residents have long pointed to speeding cars as a danger on side streets, where responsible drivers already stick to 20mph. The effect on journey times of cars over short distances will be insignifcant, but the impact on a pedestrian or a cyclist will be much reduced at lower speeds. There will now be public consultation, so residents of our neighbourhood and others, who will have the chance to put people’s safety first. Then the streets will have to be gradually redesigned back to being for safe driving, which shares the road with pedestrians and cyclists. Drivers will also save on fuel if they drive at a slow steady pace, with less use of the accelerator and brakes. Everyone can expect to gain.

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