On July 13, 2020 Greenville City Council heard a staff presentation about the status of the traffic calming program and Council members had much to say. Council members said they hear about fast moving motor vehicles on neighborhood streets more than any other issue. Staff emphasized the program to add speed humps, planted medians and traffic circles have been effective, and that the new radar speed limit signs have been a great addition to lowering vehicle speeds.
While we applaud these necessary improvements, we also know that they are limited by cost and time it takes to implement them. Bike Walk Greenville therefore encourages Greenville City Council to adopt a resolution to implement a citywide public information and awareness campaign for a 20 mph maximum speed on residential streets. We believe that such a campaign can be implemented relatively quickly, at low cost, and improve community safety by communicating the importance and effectiveness of adopting lower driving speeds where people live. This resolution would be a valuable contribution to the planned August 2020 Council action on revising the traffic calming program.
Staff agreed in the meeting that the cost and timelines to add engineering solutions do not support the community wide demand for slowing the cars. Nobody, it seems, wants fast moving vehicles on the street where they live. Slowing vehicles on residential streets reaps safety and quality of life benefits for everyone, including drivers. A public information campaign would amplify the concerned voices in the community and encourage drivers to participate in making residential areas safer for those who live there by reducing their speed.
The power of a city led public education campaign here in Greenville has been recently demonstrated by the response toCOVID-19. We offer that there are very few residents who do not understand the need for social distancing due to the ubiquitous green signs.
A “20 is plenty” public information campaign to engage the community to slow down is a relatively low cost addition to the traffic calming program. The recent adoption of ordinances in Boulder, Colorado and Washington DC could serve as the model for a Greenville City Council resolution
Over three years ago this opinion column was published. The graphic in the photo that we used in the column clearly explains why we must have a campaign to slow the cars. If we prevent one death by slowing motor vehicles we will have succeeded.
You can join us in making our city a safer and better place to live. Please reach out our City Council members and ask that they support a 20 is plenty resolution.