A 20mph limit could be introduced across borough.
The plans were announced by Cllr Peter Buckwell, Richmond Council Cabinet Member for Highways, following a rise in the number of community petitions being submitted to the Council, requesting 20mph.
Currently, if residents want 20mph in their road they need to submit a petition. If this meets the required criteria, the Council then evaluates the impact of a suggested speed limit restriction. This involves looking at data including traffic volumes, speeds and accident rates. Should officers view that a 20mph approach is desirable, a formal consultation is carried out with all households on the impacted road.
At the Council meeting, Cllr Buckwell announced that the Council would now look at whether a 20mph limit could be introduced across the whole borough, where appropriate. The aim would be to reduce vehicle speeds.
Any proposal would be subject to public consultation.
Cllr Buckwell said:
“It has always been our objective to introduce a 20mph speed limit in those areas of the borough where residents want it. However, I am aware that the current process hasn’t worked for everyone and residents have been frustrated that their petitions and campaigning haven’t resulted in 20mph zones.
“Therefore, we propose to consider a general move towards a 20mph speed limit across the whole borough where appropriate.
“Our highways are changing. Across London more and more boroughs are introducing a 20mph speed limit. The lack of consistency for drivers is confusing.
The highway is for everybody. We have more road users who we wish to protect and not discourage; cyclists, children walking to school and older people driving for longer into old age. We have more young families in the borough and we wish to encourage active travel. We also have to anticipate the future of our cars – with driverless vehicles on the not too distant horizon.
“We need to be preparing for these changes.
“This will take time. We need to plan carefully and consider the funding for implementation. So, over the next few months we will prepare a borough-wide scheme for community consultation.
“These changes can only be effective if they have the active backing of local people.”