Vancouver city councillor wants 30 km/h speed limits on side streets in BC

Apr 19 2019, 2:09 am

A Vancouver city councillor is making a push for some serious changes to speed limits in British Columbia.

Next week, Pete Fry will be presenting a motion to council to reduce speed limits to 30 km/h on residential side streets.

The adjustment would require a change to the Motor Vehicle Act (MVA), which currently calls for a 50 km/h speed limit if driving within city limits.

One of the motion’s main arguments is that the survival chance for a pedestrian struck by a vehicle travelling at 50 km/h is a mere 20%.

Decreasing the speed limit to 30 km/h would increase the probability of pedestrian survival to 90%.

Alongside the motion are a handful of studies and reports, published between 2016 and 2018, all of which call for lower speed limits in urban areas.

Fry argues that only the only drivers that ever need to travel at more than 50 km/h on residential streets are emergency responders and at the end of the day, active transportation and livability should trump all else.

He also notes that an average of 56 pedestrians are killed each year due to car crashes and thousands more are injured.

Should this motion pass, the Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) would lobby for British Columbia to amend the Motor Vehicle Act and reduce the speed limits on local streets to 30 km/h.

Municipalities would be able to increase speed limits on local streets on a case-by-case basis.

The motion will be presented to city council on Tuesday, April 23, 2019.

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