02 June 2009

Copenhagen Gets Up To Speed By Lowering It

Bryggebroen Backlight
In a post about a year ago we highlighted initiatives in other European cities to encourage cleaner air and lower speeds.

It appears that Copenhagen is finally getting up to speed. The city is planning to create a 40 km/h zone in the city, as well as restricting trucks to drive on limited, specific routes. All in an effort to increase traffic safety.

Danish and international studies show that lower speed limits work. There are fewer accidents and the ones that occur are less serious. When the speed limit falls, pedestrians and cyclists feel safer, too.

The Mayor for the Environmental and Technical Administration, Klaus Bondam, says, "A 40 km/h zone in Copenhagen is a relatively drastic step that we in the administration must decide to take. For me it's about finding a solution that is effective so we avoid trucks barrelling through high density bicycle areas and residential neighbourhoods. At the same time we must acknowledge that we are a large city and that makes a lot of the transport necessary. It's a tough balancing act but I believe many of the proposals are extremely good."

The strategy contains 12 different initiatives that include deciding which kind of trucks the city itself will use, a 'red route net' for truck traffic, ITS solutions, creation of zones with time restrictions and a law about lower cabs on trucks.

Bold stuff. We're keeping our eyes on this case.