A spot of good news last week: many of the streets in Wellington’s suburb of Newtown went from a 50km/hour to 40km/hour speed limit.
I reckon Newtown is probably one of the Greenest suburbs in New Zealand. Its polling booths attract upwards of 20 percent for the Greens in national elections, and it is located in one of the only wards New Zealand to elect a Green Party city councillor, Celia Wade-Brown. The result is, according to another councillor, Hayley Wain:
“The proposal to lower the speed limits on these roads went out for public consultation last year, and the vast majority of respondents favoured the proposal with many even requesting it be reduced further to 30km/h,”
So maybe 30kmph is something we can look forward to soon.
I’m not a Newtown resident, but it is my local shopping centre and I pass through it on my way to and from work every day. It’s the kind of place where people wander out onto the road, often with a cheerful belief that traffic will make allowances, cars pull out of little side streets and cyclists try to navigate their way through sometimes congested traffic. Changing to 40kmph is a simple, free way of recognising that Newtowns streets are as much about buses, pedestrians and cyclists as they are about cars. So, great work Wellington City Council.