A proposal to reduce the legal speed limit in Attard’s residential roads to 30 kilometres per hour has been approved unanimously by the council and its implementation now awaits the final stamp of the transport authority.
The motion, presented last month by Alternattiva Demokratika councillor Ralph Cassar, was seconded by Nationalist mayor Stefan Cordina and obtained cross-party support.
“We are gradually realising that roads should not be the sole domain of cars but they must also be safe for pedestrians,” Mr Cassar said when contacted.
The council has now written to Transport Malta seeking approval of the decision.
The motion also calls on the regulator to introduce traffic calming measures in four residential roads where over-speeding is encouraged by their particular design.
Asked whether he feared a backlash from motorists who will be made to drive at a slower speed than the national urban speed limit of 40 kph, Mr Cassar insisted safety was a more important consideration.
“In reality, you do not have to drive at more than 30 kph in residential roads and the council will be explaining its decision to residents in the hope of bringing about a mentality change,” he said.
The council has received complaints of over-speeding and Attard was the site of a horrific accident last year when two sisters were mowed down while crossing the road on a zebra crossing. According to Mr Cassar, the decision seeks to make streets safe for pedestrians so that parents may feel omfortable allowing their children to walk alone or use their bicycle in the locality.
The council’s decision is possibly the first of its kind to impose a 30 kph speed limit for all residential roads and follows the European Parliament’s adoption of the Koch report on road safety in September.
The report is not binding and suggests more incentives to encourage people to walk, cycle and make use of public transport.
Reducing speed limits in built-up areas is one of the proposals and is seen as a significant measure in lowering the number of fatal or near-fatal accidents.
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