20 is plenty for South Ward

Young children and cyclists stand to benefit most if speed limits in residential roads were reduced to 20mph.

Streets with a 20mph speed limit have less traffic noise, lower emissions and 40% fewer road causalities, improving road safety especially for young children.

South Ward Borough Councillors Brian Clark and Paul Wilby, members of Maidstone’s Joint Transport Committee, are seeking your views on their proposals to improve road safety in Boughton Lane, Norrington Road, Paynes Lane and adjoining roads. 

Their scheme would reduce the speed limit in the vicinity including the entrance to New Line Learning, Five Acre Wood and Tiger Schools and the Bright Horizons Preschool site. It would also include the entrance to the Boughton Parade Car Park.

 

What are they planning to do?

They are proposing a 20mph speed limit be implemented in the area. The roads included are shown in the plan below:

© OpenStreetMap contributors

 

Why do they want to do this work?

The proposed 20mph speed limit is in response to numerous requests from residents and has been supported by the North Loose Residents Association. Concerns have been expressed about the speed of traffic and the safety of pedestrians, especially schoolchildren, crossing the road at the New Line Learning school site in Boughton Lane and while walking in Paynes Lane and Pear Tree Lane (where the lack of footpath affects road safety).

What will the scheme involve?

To ensure this is an effective 20mph speed limit, it would be necessary to consider 'light-touch' measures such as upright repeater signs and roundel road markings (at locations shown on the plan). There are no plans to remove any on street parking.

Informal Consultation

Brian and Paul have been working with Kent Highways and MBC on highways schemes as members of Maidstone’s Joint Transport Board. The proposal was initially submitted by Brian in July 2019, following an officer request for suggestions for a 20mph pilot scheme. While this plan was not included in the pilot, it was once again proposed for the first round of “Active Travel” grant funding during the early days of the pandemic.

Disappointingly, while the unpopular King Street cycle lane scheme received active travel funding, the 20mph plan did not make the shortlist. They are now undertaking an informal consultation to gather evidence of support for such a proposal.

Next steps

Brian and Paul will collate the responses to this informal consultation. If there is sufficient support for the speed reduction, they will submit the evidence to Kent Highways with a view to progressing this proposal.