Transport for London (TfL) and the Mayor of London have unveiled new plans for 8 new pilots of reduced 20mph speed limits on roads in the area. It is hoped that this will reduce casualties on the road and increase ‘active travel’ such as cycling and walking. The first pilot location will be Commercial Street in Tower Hamlets, due to be introduced in April. A further 7 pilots will be introduced through 2015 and 2016.

The 20mph speed limits are something that both the Mayor and TfL have been supporting for some time now, as roads covering over 280km in length were lowered to the new limit in 2013/14. At the moment almost 25% of the roads in London are currently running on the 20mph limit with more to follow. TfL has identified a further 50km of its network which may benefit from the introduction of a 20mph speed limit. The Elephant & Castle Northern roundabout is one of those areas under consideration, which will come as good news to cyclists after it was found to be the biggest cycling accident blackspot in the capital.

The pilot schemes would take place over a period of 18 months and be subject to detailed monitoring. Data on accidents, number of cyclists/pedestrians, speed of traffic and impact on journey times will be assessed in order to determine if the reduced limits will be permanent.

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “Lower speeds have the potential to significantly improve road safety while enhancing the environment for walking and cycling. As well as actively supporting and funding the installation of 20mph zones and limits on borough roads across London, we have also been looking at the TfL Road Network to see where further 20 mph limits could provide significant benefits. These locations will help us to better understand the role that 20 mph limits could play going forward.”