Five communities across Scotland are to have new 20 mph speed limits in a pilot scheme designed to improve safety on trunk roads.
The five pilot areas – Maybole, Largs, Biggar, Langholm and Oban – have been chosen using selection criteria taking accident rates, vehicle speeds and traffic data into account.
A consultation process will now develop more specific proposals for each location. The process will involve discussions with the local authority, community groups and other stakeholders, and statutory consultation.
It is expected that the 20 mph schemes on the trunk roads will be largely self-enforcing with no need for traffic calming measures. The use of gateway treatments, signing and lining will reinforce the speed limit changes.
Keith Brown, Scotland’s transport minister, said: “The safety of the trunk road network is a priority for Transport Scotland and managing speed is an important part of our strategy.
“It is essential that speeds are appropriate to conditions and these pilot zones will help us establish the benefits of lowering speeds in towns and villages where it is reasonable to do so.
“The five trials will seek to improve road safety generally but we expect them to bring specific benefits for vulnerable road users such as older people and cyclists.
“There have been a number of calls for lower speed limits and specifically 20 mph limits and we have had to whittle these down to a number that will give us a meaningful overview of how this will work in a variety of locations.
“In doing so, we considered the number of accidents and other factors such as traffic volumes and speeds as well as HGV numbers and the characteristics of the location.
“The proposed pilot areas should not require significant engineering or police enforcement to support their operation and we hope to begin the wider consultation processes early next year.
“If these are completed successfully, the 20mph zones may be in place by the spring or early summer.”
Click here to read the full Transport Scotland news release.