20mph limits to come to Norwich!

The Norwich Highways Agency Committee has today approved the principle
of introducing a 20mph speed limit across residential roads in the
City. The committee agreed a proposal from myself that a blanket 20mph limit, based primarily around
signage, should be introduced.

In June 2006 City Councillors unanimously agreed that there should be
a 20mph speed limit across residential roads in the city. Since then
the Conservative County Councillors, who hold the casting vote on the
Norwich Highways Agency Committee, have consistently blocked the
proposals – until today. This morning’s meeting was the first one at
which I had the right to vote – by virtue of the Greens becoming the second party on

the City Council on1st May.

I am delighted that my first formal proposal to the Norwich
Highways Agency Committee has resulted in the Committee at last
agreeing to this progressive proposal of introducing 20mph speed
limits across the city. At every meeting of the committee, local
residents and Councillors from different parts of the city submit
questions and petitions asking for a 20mph speed limit in their area.
They are usually turned down because they are fighting over a small
pot of money and because the Committee has up until now taken a
piecemeal approach to reducing traffic speeds. Now that the Committee
has agreed in principle to this move, it hopefully won’t be long
before residents across the city can enjoy 20mph speed limits and the
safer streets they will bring. This decision that we have taken today
means that lives that otherwise would have been lost will be saved.

The next step will be for Council officers to develop the details and
likely cost of the scheme. The officers had recommended that the
committee did not go ahead with the proposals because of the high cost
of introducing traffic calming measures such as speed bumps across the
city. However, under the proposal agreed today, the scheme will be
mainly based around signage – although we in the Greens are keen for
officers to assess alternative and additional methods of enforcement,

Following today’s decision, Norwich is set to become one of the first
cities in the country to introduce a blanket 20mph limit – following
on from recent similar moves in Portsmouth and Aberdeen.



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