Some of the early conversations we have had with local people in Marks Gate have shown that there is concern about the speed of vehicles travelling along Rose Lane. Standing at the side of the road it’s not difficult to see why people have mentioned this – the road is quite wide in places and it’s easy for drivers to pick up speed. It can be hard to believe the speed limit is 20 miles per hour!
To find out the extent of the problem we put four Automatic Traffic Counters (ATCs) along Rose Lane to measure the number of vehicles travelling along the road, and record the speed they were travelling at. You can see where we put the counters on the map – they’re marked in red.
The results are in, and they were very interesting – for example at the counter closest to Whalebone Lane North one vehicle was going over 90mph! Thankfully this is very unusual, but overall drivers are exceeding the 20mph speed limit, and this is a problem for everyone on Rose Lane and in the surrounding area. Rose Lane is also fairly busy, carrying an average of 1,500 vehicles per day.
At the counter outside the school 85% of vehicles were found to be travelling at 29mph. This is not only well above the speed limit, but it also means that should the car be involved in a collision, it is more likely that the people involved will be more injured than if they were travelling at 20mph. In an area with so many pedestrians, many of them children, it is even more important that vehicle speeds are kept low.
However, the area outside the school is not the only location where this is an issue – at all the counters it was found that 85% of vehicles exceeded the speed limit.
So what does this mean?
Whilst speed counts do not provide the whole picture, they have shown that the 20mph speed limit is not having the desired effect. At the moment drivers are maintaining their speed along the length of the road, with nothing to slow them down. It seems that drivers either do not know it is a 20mph limit, or choose to ignore it. In either case, this makes for a less safe, unpleasant environment for those walking and cycling in the area, and may put some people off entirely.
Sound a bit doom and gloom? It’s not the end of the story! The good news is that although this paints a bit of a bad picture at the moment, there are lots of solutions for addressing this problem, and now is the time to act! Pop along to one of the co-design workshops (coming soon) and help to redesign Rose Lane to make it a safe, attractive place for everyone.