The campaign for a town-wide 20mph limit, delivering safer, healthier, cleaner streets for everyone.
Author: Tim Stonor
Architect & Urban Planner | Managing Director, Space Syntax Limited | Deputy Chair, Design Council | Visiting Professor, University College London | Director, The Academy of Urbanism | Fellow, Royal Society of Arts | Advisory Board, Norman Foster Foundation | Resident of Faversham
In mid-September, the speed limit on Faversham’s streets is changing to 20mph. The scheme is the result of five years of hard work by members of the local community. We want it to be the starting point for making our town healthier, safer and cleaner for everyone, particularly for those walking or cycling. Faversham Town Council and Kent County Council have worked together with Phil Jones Associates to design a scheme to lower the speed limit for motor traffic. Funding is coming from the Government’s Emergency Active Travel Fund, in support of its recently announced ‘cycling and walking revolution’.
The Faversham 20’s Plenty Community Group welcomes Kent County Council’s decision to establish a town-wide 20mph speed limit in Faversham. The evidence is clear that 20mph limits create safer conditions for vulnerable people. They also have significant benefits for air quality by reducing levels of the harmful fine particulates created through continuous acceleration and braking. In addition, 20mph limits encourage walking and cycling, leading to healthier lifestyles.
This is not just the view of a small group of local people – or even just the view of the town, borough and county councils, our local MP and leading transport professionals, all of who back the town-wide limit. 20mph limits are also supported by the World Health Organisation, Public Health England, South East Coast Ambulance NHS Foundation Trust (incorporating Faversham Community First Responders) as well as numerous healthcare professionals.
We await further information on KCC’s proposals. In particular we encourage KCC to engage directly with the 20’s Plenty for Faversham Community Campaign Group and to tap into the wealth of local knowledge that we have generated in over 5 years of campaigning. Local people need to know what is happening but, more importantly, why it is happening. This means engagement now, not later: before the measures are implemented, not afterwards. Schemes that seem foisted upon places are less popular than those that are carefully explained in advance. There is much therefore for KCC to do in the next few weeks and we look forward to helping in this important effort.