Watch CBS News

Proposed Legislation Would Lower Speed Limits On Most City Side Streets

NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) -- Speeding has been one of the top complaints by New Yorkers across the five boroughs.

Now, there is a new push to reduce the speed limit from 30 to 20 mph on many residential streets, CBS 2's Don Champion reported.

"It is a bill that will save lives," Councilman David Greenfield (D) said.

Greenfield has backed a bill that calls for speed limits on most side streets to be reduced and said that he is motivated by safety, not speeding tickets.

"It's proven. It's been done in major cities like Tokyo, London, and Paris and in those cities we've seen a 40-percent reduction in fatalities," Greenfield said.

Studies have shown that the speed limit reduction lowers the odds of a pedestrian being killed in an accident.

A report by the UK Department of Transportation found that 5-percent of pedestrians would die as a result of being hit by a car traveling 20 mph.

Juan Martinez, a spokesman for pedestrian and cyclist advocate Transportation Alternatives, said that the speed limit change wouldn't have much of an effect on motorists.

"It's not going to change driving in the city. It's not often that you're able to go 30 mph safely on these narrow residential streets anyway," Martinez said.

Not everyone is on board. AAA New York said that the limit reduction would require speed bumps and other devices to be installed on those roadways.

Pedestrians offered mixed reactions.

"I fear that having a 20 mph driving limit will not stop them from speeding," Candace Tovar said.

"I just have a sneaky suspicion that it's just a brilliant way to raise more money," Judith Leventhal added.

The bill is still with the Transportation Committee but it could come up for a vote in 2014.

In September, fifteen pedestrians were killed in accidents in New York City.

You May Also Be Interested In These Stories

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.