Westminster Council has announced that it plans to introduce 20MPH speed limits in a number of pilot areas. These will be implemented in streets in close proximity to schools or where there has been a history of speed related accidents. We will also put up vehicle activated signs to collect data on traffic speeds on these roads.
Westminster Conservatives have been studying the evidence and refusing to jump on the 20mph bandwagon. Many Labour council’s have designated all of their roads 20 mph and as a result have seen negligible impact from such a policy. Many motorists have not been made aware of which roads required more caution and as a result have ignored the reduced speed limits.
We have always said that such measures need to be part of a package of interventions and areas need to be clearly designated. The overall evidence remains mixed and that is why we believe that the time is right to test whether these restrictions can work on Westminster streets.
The average speed in many streets in Westminster is very low and significantly below 20mph and so we recognise that other measures are required in many parts of the city. We will continue to use other interventions on our roads as in many cases, a change in the road layout remains the most effective way of reducing traffic speeds.
Cllr Melvyn Caplan, Cabinet Member for City Management commented ‘Westminster Conservatives recognise that the city is complex place and that a variety of solutions are needed to keep it a safe place for all its residents and visitors. We believe that piloting 20mph roads in specific, carefully selected areas is an additional way in which we can alert motorists for the need to drive more carefully and slowly on those roads’.