Liverpool City Council is planning to extend 20mph speed limit zones to cover 70% of the city’s streets. Currently, 20mph zones are in place close to schools and apply to 30% of Liverpool’s roads, but councilors say that increasing coverage could save more than £5 million a year through reducing accidents.
The Liverpool Daily Post reports that last year, the Labour Party, which runs the city council, said that it would back a motion from the Green Party to put the lower speed limit in place in all residential roads in the Merseyside city.
Now, a public consultation will take place ahead of a decision being made on whether to put a 20mph speed limit in place on an additional 587km of the city’s road network.
Councillor Malcolm Kennedy, cabinet member for transport and regeneration, told the newspaper: “Making our roads safer is a key priority for us.
“The number of accidents on our roads has been reducing over the years, but we are determined to cut them even further.
“However, we need to make sure that these proposals are supported by people and can be enforced. That is why we will be consulting extensively over the plans, to make sure we get it right.”
The newspaper adds that roads that currently have a speed limit of 40mph would not be subject to the reduced speed limit, nor would A and B roads, major roads that are not mainly residential in nature or those with little scope for developing cycling.
Councillor Richard Kemp, deputy leader of the Liberal Democrat opposition, said it was important for local residents to make their voices heard ahead of any changes being finalised.
“We have long pushed for more 20mph zones in Liverpool,” he explained. “In July last year, I signed a motion to the council on this very subject.
“I am delighted the council has listened and is taking steps to ensure road users’ safety.”
Other towns and cities to have introduced 20mph zones across much of their road networks include Oxford and Portsmouth.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.