Monday, 5 July 2010

Twenty’s Plenty for Brighton and Hove. Or some of it. Hopefully. Maybe.

The front page of Brighton’s Argus has proclaimed “The 20mph City.” Looking at the report of the Scrutiny Panel, to which I presented evidence as a local supporter of Living Streets earlier this year, I hope that the Argus is right. The recommendations seem to be along the lines of ‘let’s have a 20mph limit in residential areas, or where there are groups who need protecting – like children or the elderly.’ Will the recommendations be implemented by Brighton and Hove City Council, desperate to preserve “modal choice”? (aka, “we aren’t even going to attempt to restrain car use”).  images 20mph sign And since zone-by-zone implementation is more expensive, it will only happen as resources allow. How likely is that, in the current spending climate? It would be sad if this great opportunity to reduce speed limits to 20mph across Brighton and Hove is missed, as we will lose the public policy benefits that go with it: fewer crashes, meaning fewer deaths and injuries, reduced pollution, quieter streets, and roads which are more friendly to non-motorised users, whether on bikes or on foot. 1324-1244037476l8zN walking As Portsmouth has shown with its 20mph default speed limit, the costs are minimal and the benefits keep on growing. Let’s hope that Brighton and Hove gets the message.

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