From the LCK Committee, 20 May 2023
KCDC is now looking for feedback on its first Speed Management Plan, which outlines how the transport network is expected to look in ten years time, with an emphasis on lower speeds, and our seeking the views of ratepayers. LCK plans to make a submission on the Plan and encourages everyone who wants safer roads and lower transport emissions to have their say too.
The proposal has two parts.
PART A covers speed limitations in “high benefit areas” as outlined by Waka Kotahi. For Kāpiti, it includes 20 schools, three road corridors and five town centres (28 sites amounting to 8 percent of the length of our road network) where speed limitations will be put in place by 2027.
PART B sets out possible long-term options for plans that deliver safe and appropriate speed limits as required by the Land Transport Rule: Setting of Speed Limits 2022. These would be put in place between 2027 and 2033.
In this second part, KCDC is asking for feedback on the following four options:
Option 1: Expand speed limits in school zones.
Option 2: Expand 30 km/h neighbourhoods.
Option 3: Road corridors – install infrastructure to slow down traffic on these roads.
Option 4: Reduce speeds on all roads to 30 or 40 km/h.
If we are to halve our emissions by 2030 then getting people out of cars and into active transport is one of the most immediate ways we can get results.
However, the perception that cycling and walking are dangerous creates a major barrier to the uptake of these modes of transport. As KCDC points out, there is a close correlation between speed and deaths. At 60 km/h, if a car strikes a person, there is a 90% chance of death, at 50 km/h this reduces to 80%, at 40km/h to 30% and at 30 km/h to 10%. Therefore, by reducing speeds, death and serious injuries on our roads will be reduced and people will be more willing to make the change to active transport.
Therefore, LCK totally supports this transition to slower speeds. We support Part A, but would like to see greater urgency in its implementation. These changes will not be finally implemented until 2027.
For Part B, LCK will support Option 4 above, a reduction to 30 and 40 km/h on all roads. We would
also like to see seperate cycle lanes for any roads where speeds are not reduced to 40 km/h or less.
Also, it should be noted that these speed reductions will actually have minimal impact on the time it
takes for trips to be completed. For example, dropping the full length of Peka Peka Road from 80 to
60km/h adds only about 26 seconds to the time. (Council must now take into account what is “safe
and appropriate”, which is why the Peka Peka Rd speed limit would reduce from 80 to 60 km/h,
because of its significance as a cycle route.)
Overall, we feel greater urgency is required in implementing these changes. We need to get people
using active transport modes now, not in ten years time when we will be well past the 2030 deadline
for halving our emissions.
We also feel that enforcement is an important part of the change. There is little point in having these
speed limits if they can be easily ignored. In Queensland, the Department of Transport and Main Roads is piloting a road safety programme around schools, using portable hi-tech speed cameras attached to powered road signs. Cameras spot anyone above the speed limit and the fine can include demerit points. The Queensland Department also employs bicycle-activated warning signs, to alert and slow motorists on roads not often frequented by cyclists.
We would like to see everyone that wants safer roads and to reduce transport emissions to speak up in support of lower speed limits. To find more information and to make your own submission online, visit: https://www.kapiticoast.govt.nz/SpeedManagementPlan
If you would like to discuss this with KCDC please email <email@example.com> or call 0800
The survey closes on 9 June.