Living Streets Scotland is pleased to announce a new project which will work in four communities across Scotland, supporting communities and local authorities to introduce 20mph areas.

20mph banner

© Andy Carlin / Cycle Walk Vote

The chances of a pedestrian dying as a result of being struck by a motor vehicle decreases hugely at slower speed.

30mph

 

1 in 5

20mph

 

1 in 40

Lower speeds mean fewer accidents and more opportunities for walking and cycling. The air is cleaner. There is less traffic noise. Children and older people find it easier to cross the road. Communities feel like better places.

Lowering speed is about safety - at 30mph there is a 1 in 5 chance of being killed; at 20mph there is a 1 in 40 chance of being killed.

But lowering speed is also about helping to redress the balance between walkers, cyclists and cars. And it helps to get us all a bit more active!

Residential streets are areas which have to both accommodate cars but also be a place where people walk to the local shops, exercise dogs, where children learn to ride bikes or residents commute to school or work.

However many communities now feel that cars – and the speed they drive at - are preventing people using the streets for walking and cycling. People feel wary about where to cross and there are increasing fears about safety when out walking.

Increasingly communities across Scotland are concerned about the speed of traffic in their streets.

Communities like Dunbar in East Lothian have campaigned effectively for a 20mph limit in most of their town – and the local authority has worked with them to make this happen.

 

Our Lower Speed Communities project will work with communities and local authorities to look at:

  • how to get more people supporting 20mph areas
  • how local people can be involved in agreeing which areas should be 20mph
  • how to work with car drivers to get them to reduce their speed
  • how to work with schools on walk to school routes or walking buses
  • setting up walking and cycling groups to take advantage of lower speed streets.

Communities we are working in

Lossiemouth

Lossiemouth Community Council approached Living Streets Scotland with concern about road safety on streets surrounding one school.

In discussion, it became clear that concerns applied to a large residential area which is home to both of the town’s primary schools and close to the High School and Leisure and Community Centre.

The major concerns are: speed and volume of traffic particularly at school entry and exit times, speed and volume of traffic near play areas, parking, and encouraging people to walk or cycle for short distances.

Both primary schools have high numbers of pupils who walk to school, however both are concerned about traffic volume and speed on the children’s walk to school, parking outside the school and speed of traffic on roads near the schools.

Both schools have part-time 20mph zones outside the school entrances. Contact has been made with officers at Moray Council who are supporting the group with traffic counts and mapping of the children’s journey to school. The working group has representation from Police Scotland and both primary schools and local elected members are in attendance.

An Action Plan has been agreed, with the period to summer used for evidence gathering and planning and most action concentrated in the August to November period.

Continuing work will include contacting local organisations, publicising to the wider community, evidence gathering on speed and volume of traffic, mapping the walk to school and following up on the walk round with the local community on 1 June.

Tillydrone, Aberdeen

The Communities Team at Aberdeen City Council contacted Living Streets due to concerns with speed and volume of traffic being raised during resident engagement on the new Localities Plan.

Tillydrone sits beside the new Diamond Bridge and is bisected by the upgraded Tillydrone Road. This has led to an increase in volume and speed of traffic going along this road, and increased traffic within the estate.

Discussions with local people raised a range of issues: speed and volume of traffic on Tillydrone Road, increased volume, speed and rat running of traffic within the estate, conflict between pedestrians and cyclists on the new cycle and walk way, dangers for children crossing roads to school, increased pollution, and a concern to encourage children and adults to walk and cycle more.

Discussions are underway with the two local schools and Transport Planners. The Council’s school crossing patrol team is involved followed safety concerns raised by one lollipop lady.

An initial Action Plan is being drawn up and the next steps include: mapping children’s journey to school, canvassing local people for their views on specific issues, gathering evidence of speed and changes to traffic volume, contacting other local groups and drawing up a set of priority actions.

Moniaive

Moniaive Initiative contacted Living Streets following concerns with volume and speed of traffic and difficulties for pedestrians raised by residents in the preparation of their Action Plan.

The village has three entry points, a long, narrow and winding main street, sees much passing traffic and is used daily by agricultural vehicles and timber lorries. Due to its age and design streets are narrow and pavements either narrow or non-existant. The village primary school sits directly on the street near to one of the entry points to the village.

It has no 20mph zone in front due to difficulties with the street layout and a lack of staff time and capital resources at Dumfries and Galloway Council. Many houses in the main street have no off road parking and therefore park in the street. The community council has tried to get a 20mph area for the village over a number of years, but with no success.

An initial meeting has been held with a range of representatives from local organisations and residents. This reiterated the above issues. A meeting has been held with Dumfries and Galloway Council to discuss their criteria for 20mph areas, evidence of speed and volume held, and intentions to undertake work in Moniaive.

The next steps are to agree an action plan on gathering evidence and arguments to present to the Council, and the action the local community, including the school, can take.

Glasgow

Glasgow City Council has a rolling programme for the introduction of 20mph speed limit areas. However, due to resource constraints the city council has not been able to carry out any monitoring of the impact of this programme.

The Mount Florida area has been identified as a good area in which to promote and monitor the impact of the scheme in partnership with local community organisations.

 

Inverness City Centre

Highland Council contacted Living Streets due to the imminent completion of the 20mph area in the city centre of Inverness.

An initial 20mph area had been put in place but no monitoring of its impact had been undertaken due to a lack of resources. With the plan now agreed to complete the 20mph area, it was considered an appropriate time to review the effectiveness and compliance with existing 20mph areas, undertake public and stakeholder engagement in defining the benefits of the scheme, and promote the scheme and its benefits to drivers, residents and visitors.

Discussions are currently on going with Highland Council to agree roles and resources involved, including the involvement of other Council Services.

Want to know more?

If you would like to find out more about the project please contact Barbara Allan barbara.allan@livingstreets.org.uk