* Update 070317: At least some cases have been substantiated of police acting against offenders
HACKNEY COUNCIL is extending its 20mph limit to cover the whole borough. By 2015 it will be illegal to drive at 30mph, the present limit, on the A10, above, where it runs through Hackney, on the Dalston-Lane-Graham Road extension of Balls Pond Road and all other routes in the borough.
It will not be a notional 20mph, as it has been on the Hackney streets that are already subject to the council’s signposted yet oft-ignored limit. Press map below to enlarge.
“The big news,” says Councillor Vincent Stops, “is that there will be enforcement.” It was a “real coup” for Hackney council and his colleague, Feryal Demirci, who had won the commitment from the police to enforce the 20mph maximum.
The news emerged at a council meeting last week when safety in Navarino, Greenwood and Cricketfield roads was discussed.
Hackney is still negotiating with Transport for London to seek agreement on the network of Hackney roads that TfL controls, and with Islington council, with which it shares roads. Demirci believes she will win agreement by 2015.
Hackney council this week offered no more information. Hackney police, contacted by Loving Dalston, did not confirm that they would enforce the limit.
The Automobile Association’s road and transport policy head, Paul Watters, said: “AA members support 20mph speed limits in residential streets and near schools.
“Successful schemes are those that have local support. Providing they are respected, they can improve quality of life and reduce risk of death and serious injury, particularly where there are large numbers of pedestrians.
“However, extending 20mph limits too far and on to busier routes, like those with bus services, can limit their success because compliance with the limit can reduce – and bus journey times increase.”
Hackney Green Party said it was pleased that the council had finally taken steps to ensure the safety of pedestrians and cyclists by adopting 20mph throughout the borough, a Greens policy for many years, proposed by former councillor Mischa Borris in 2008, “although her recommendation was rejected”.
Other local authorities are likely to introduce a 20mph limit. It could be the norm in all London boroughs by 2020.
David Altheer 040214
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