Following a vote by the City’s Court of Common Council last autumn, consultation begins on Tuesday [28 January] on the implementation of the City’s 20mph speed limit. The consultation will last at least three weeks.
The change is part of the City’s Road Danger Reduction Plan and it is estimated it will add only minutes to journey times whilst decreasing casualties by more than 30 a year; a 10% reduction. It is supported by the Mayor of London, TfL and the City of London Police and forms a key part of delivering the capital’s wider “Safe Streets for London” road safety plan.
The creation of more area-wide 20mph speed limits was a key recommendation of the Mayor’s Roads Task Force, helping improve safety perceptions and encouraging pedestrians and cyclists. The proposed scheme covers almost all of the Square Mile, and fits with many the surrounding boroughs, which have widely adopted 20mph speed limits and zones.
At the same time, TfL will be introducing an “experimental traffic order” to set 20mph speed limits on two north-south corridors through the City. These are:
• Blackfriars Bridge, New Bridge Street, Farringdon Street (up to Charterhouse Street) – which form part of the Mayor’s proposed North-South cycle route.
• London Bridge, King William Street, Gracechurch Street, Bishopsgate, Norton Folgate (up to Worship Street) – which will tie in with a pedestrian improvement scheme currently being delivered outside Liverpool Street station.
TfL’s trial will last 18 months, during which time it will gather feedback and monitor the scheme’s merits.
Residents and commuters will have the opportunity to comment on both schemes on the TfL and City of London websites. Subject to feedback, the new speed limits would look to be introduced during summer 2014.
Michael Welbank, Chairman of the Planning & Transportation committee said, “Over the last 10 years, the road usage in the City has changed dramatically, with the number of cyclists tripling. This is one of a number of steps we are taking to reduce the tragic numbers of pedestrian and cyclist deaths in conjunction with our Road Danger Reduction Plan, and this consultation is an important step in the scheme’s implementation.”
Steve Presland, Transportation & Public Realm Director, said, “We have worked closely with our neighbouring boroughs and TfL to implement the 20mph speed limit effectively, and hope that this stage of the process will lead to a much-needed reduction in injuries and casualties.”
Leon Daniels, Managing Director of Surface Transport at TfL said: “Through the Roads Task Force, the Mayor has made a major commitment to invest in London’s road network, ensuring the Capital remains a thriving international city that supports economic growth and provides safe and attractive spaces for all. We have long supported 20mph speed limits on borough roads and more than 20 per cent – or more than one km in every five – of all roads in London are now 20mph.
“While some roads in London provide vital arteries for keeping our city moving; others represent places in their own right and therefore lower speed limits could be more appropriate. Our trials in the City of London will help identify other parts of our network where speed limits could be changed in the future to better support the Mayor’s aim to grow cycling, reduce casualties and to make life in London better while keeping London moving.”