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More 40 km/h speed zones on the way

Date

Fleta Page

Speed limits in busy suburban centres such as Dickson and Erindale could be reduced to 40 kilometres an hour, following the successful trial of the lower speed limit in town centres.

The ACT government is considering expanding the 40 km/h speed limit precincts after an evaluation showed 72 per cent of people felt pedestrians and cyclists were safer since the introduction of the limits in the Belconnen, City and Tuggeranong town centres.

“The evaluation [also] included comparing ‘before and after’ traffic speeds, traffic volume and crash data as well as gathering feedback from local traders, road users and other interested members of the public,” Minister for Territory and Municipal Services Shane Rattenbury said.

The reduced speed limits were introduced in the Belconnen, City and Tuggeranong town centres in June last year following successful initial trials in the Gungahlin and Woden Town Centres.

TAMS is now looking to evaluate other areas that could benefit from 40 km/h speed limits, and will look at data from precincts classed as “group centres” to guide their decision of where to implement them.

“We’ve got some criteria around 40k zones and basically it’s areas that have got retail frontage and high levels of pedestrian activity and/or cyclist activity, because they’re the groups that really benefit from having the lower speed limits,” Mr Rattenbury said.

“Places like Dickson or Erindale or Weston Creek – Cooleman Court there – Mawson … it’s not the local shops.

“[We’ll look at] what the streets are, what the speed limits are, … the database of incidents, crashes and things like that, and also areas where there’s been informal reports of issues arising.”

Mr Rattenbury said the implementation of safer speed limits in areas with high pedestrian and cyclist activity was in line with national and ACT road safety strategies and “critical to improving road safety for vulnerable road users”.

“Research indicates that a 40 km/h speed area can significantly reduce the risk of death for pedestrians and cyclists if there is a collision,” he said.

“For example, a 10 km/h decrease in speed from 50 km/h to 40 km/h can reduce the risk of death by over 50 per cent.”

Mr Rattenbury said improved safety for all road users could help draw more pedestrian activity to the area.

“They help to create safer and vibrant community areas for Canberra, and help to make it a more sustainable and active city,” he said.

24 comments so far

  • "Mr Rattenbury said improved safety for all road users could help draw more pedestrian activity to the area" - What a load of rubbish, more people will come if there are better services in the area, not because it is supposedly safer.

    Commenter
    Bob
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    June 20, 2014, 7:26AM
    • +1 and the next thing we get told is that the whole of the ACT will be reduced to 40k speed limits and a police cameras at every corner. Is this the kind of thing that occupies Rattenbury's time as a Minister and haven't he and the ACT govt any real work to do like creating jobs, cutting council rates and stamp duty, etc? He should resign as an MP and Minister and join the ACT PS if all he is capable of is converting the ACT into a police state.

      Commenter
      Akari
      Date and time
      June 20, 2014, 10:47AM
  • So, there's no actual data about differences in pedestrian and cyclist accident rates with lower speed limits .... just an evaluation showing what people 'felt' about safety. Hmmmm, very convincing (not).

    Still, it appears to be the same "it's the vibe" approach to policy development and public expenditure that the ACT government used for the light rail project, so at least they are being consistent, I suppose.

    Commenter
    chilli
    Date and time
    June 20, 2014, 7:30AM
    • it does nothing, it achieves nothing, there is no need for it, but yeh, it's just the vibe that makes Rattenbury think he is a progressive by taking us as far back and going as slow as possible.

      Commenter
      It's just the vibe man
      Date and time
      June 20, 2014, 10:12AM
    • The NRMA research shows that - "it reduces the risk of a crash occurring and it can reduce the
      severity of any crash that does occur. Crashes at 40 ks per hour are twice as survivable as a crash at 50 ks an hour. Crashes at 30 ks an hour are five times as survivable as a crash at 50 ks an hour, if somebody is hit by a car at 40 ks an hour they are far less likely to die than if they are hit by a car at 60 ks an hour". So surely even though the ACT does not have a big road toll, one life saved is worth saving.

      Commenter
      tara
      Date and time
      June 21, 2014, 10:05AM
  • Still not used to the 40kmh zone at Belco. Still don't see the point. Still don't always see the speed humps on Benjamin Way and Lathlain St, especially at night. Bah to all of it.

    Commenter
    Grant
    Location
    ACT
    Date and time
    June 20, 2014, 7:44AM
    • Would this be the same TAMS who put in speed humps in Corinna st (trash and treasure car park) that encourage drivers to avoid them by swinging at the pedestrian walk way ? - having been hit twice by wing mirrors, their response was 'call the police'.. err no - how about you fix the speed bumps..

      Commenter
      No Cages
      Location
      Woden
      Date and time
      June 20, 2014, 8:13AM
      • Nice to see retail centres getting this treatment, but what about quite suburban streets?

        For example, my street in Calwell is a loop street of 1.3km length that technically has a 50 km/h speed limit. It is however only wide enough of two cars to pass. It is a street that has a number of families with young children. I can also point to plenty of streets in nearby suburbs such as Gordon & Banks that aren't as wide as mine that are 50 km/h streets too.

        Mine and these other streets would benefit from having 40km/h, or even in some cases, 30km/h speed limits. No need to erect signs, just stencil the roadway at the entrance to the street.

        Commenter
        Canberra Sea Eagle
        Date and time
        June 20, 2014, 8:14AM
        • How many pedestrians have been killed by this crazy 50km/h exactly?

          Commenter
          It's just the vibe man
          Date and time
          June 20, 2014, 11:42AM
        • Speed limits don't work unless they are enforced.
          I live in a similar street to yours, when the speed limit was dropped to 50k it made little difference, some drivers who used to obey the 60k limit slowed down a little but the hoons still race up and down same as before. Nothing will ever be done to enforce lower speed limits in suburban back streets.
          Lowering the speed limit in suburban streets is a bit like wetting your pants when wearing a dark suit, it gives you a warm feeling but no one notices.

          Commenter
          Peter
          Date and time
          June 22, 2014, 9:53PM

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