New 20 Miles Per Hour Zone in Sheffield City Centre

Sheffield City Council will introduce a 20mph speed limit in the city centre following strong public backing to the recent consultation.

 

Sheffield drivers to face 20mph city centre speed limit from Sheffield Live on Vimeo.

A 20mph speed will now be rolled out before the end of the year on hundreds of streets in Sheffield city centre in a bid to make roads safer, better for pedestrians and cyclists and to improve air quality. The consultation sought public feedback on Council plans to provide a new speeding zone on more than 300 roads in the middle of the city, encompassing nearly every street apart from a few major thoroughfares such as Arundel Gate, Derek Dooley Way and Sheaf Street.

The Council is also making plans for additional improvements to tackle congestion on the inner ring-road.

Over the recent months the city centre has witnessed an increasing number of traffic accidents and this is something the Council clearly wanted to address. It is hoped that reducing the speed of traffic in residential areas will, in the long term, reduce the number and severity of accidents. This should also reduce the fear that accidents will take place, thereby, likely to lead to more sustainable modes of travel such as cycling being adopted – resulting in a more cohesive environment overall.

Since Labour were elected to run Sheffield City Council in 2011 a series of measures have been undertaken to achieve their aim of establishing 20mph as the maximum speed for residential areas throughout Sheffield. The restriction has already been introduced with great success in areas such as Darnall, Gleadless Valley, Heeley and Stannington and now the city centre is to follow.

Labour Councillor for City Ward, Moya O’Rourke, was elected in 2015 and after many conversations with local residents it became apparent that there was an overwhelming majority who backed the plans: “Since my election I made a promise to the ward that I would make our city centre roads safer and more environmentally friendly – and I have been pushing for 20 mph zones in the centre to do just that.

“I’m delighted that so many residents in my ward contributed to the council’s public consultation. There is no way this policy would have got off the ground if there wasn’t such a strong will to make it happen by Labour councillors. It’s quite odd that the Sheffield’s Green Party are always trying to claim credit for the policy as, quite frankly, their involvement and relevance to this has been zero”.

Councillor Jack Scott, Cabinet Member for Transport and Infrastructure at Sheffield City Council, said:

“Anyone who’s been in our city centre recently will have seen that it is growing rapidly and for the better, with cranes, new shops and new developments. It needs to be a place where safety and sustainable travel are actively supported and encouraged.

“I’m pleased that the consultation was received so positively. This Labour Council is absolutely determined to improve road safety throughout the city and 20mph zones play a big role in this. Not only do speeds reduce in these areas, there’s a reduction in the severity of the accidents and an improvement in air quality”.

Councillor Scott also acknowledged that some submissions to the consultation questioned the effect of the speeding zones on air pollution.

In response Councillor Scott said: “I am aware of concerns that travelling at 20mph could negatively affect air quality. However, the evidence actually shows that at a constant lower speed a driver will use less fuel, and safer roads should mean more people taking up walking and cycling instead. I am absolutely committed to improving safety on our roads and taking real action to improve Sheffield’s air quality. Pleasingly, this measure should help in both of these respects in City Ward”.

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Launching New Bike Pumps for Sheffield

Cllr Jack Scott launching Sheffield’s new cycle pumps with Cllr Isobel Bowler and other cyclists

Sheffield’s cyclists can now top up the air in their tyres at handy locations across the city centre thanks to funding from the Local Sustainable Transport Fund.

The free on-street air pumps are now available as part of a drive to make Sheffield a cycle-friendly city and improve safety for cyclists.

The pumps are permanent fixtures, bolted to the ground and are suitable for both types of tyre valve and have a handy gauge to check pressure.

Designed and manufactured in the UK, the pump is constructed from heavy duty stainless steel with an armoured air hose along with a built in tyre pressure gauge. The pump is powered by hand so it does not require any external electrical power.

Councillor Jack Scott, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Recycling and Streetscene said: “Sheffield is among the first cities in the country to introduce these bike pumps onto the streets.  Each cycle journey made has a positive impact on the economy and environment, so providing this service for free is a good investment.

“The locations were carefully chosen where cyclists park their bikes or on the main cycling routes into the city centre, so cyclists will get the maximum benefit from the pumps.

“Many cyclists, even regular ones, don’t realise how much easier and safer it is to cycle if their tyres are inflated to the correct pressure. The pumps may even be used in an emergency if someone has a puncture nearby.

“Each cycle journey made has a positive impact on the economy and environment, so providing this service for free is a real investment and will help us to save money in the long-term.”

There are 10 pumps planned across Sheffield in strategic locations.  Six are in place now  at Bridge Street/Millsands, Five Weirs Walk/Attercliffe Road, Hunters Bar roundabout, Moore Street underpass, Glossop Road (outside the shops) and Victoria Street/Leaveygreave Road.  Four more pumps will follow at Penistone Road/Rutland Road junction, Norfolk Road/Granville Road, Crowther Place/Mount Pleasant Road and at the BMX Park on Devonshire Green.

Russell Cutts from Russell’s Bicycle Shed at Sheffield Railway Station added: “We welcome the arrival of these bike pumps. They are a great addition to the local public amenities that will make cycling much easier and help to make Sheffield a more bike friendly city.”

Jeff Carroll of Pedal Ready was also supportive of the new bike pumps.  He commented: “The introduction of these pumps at convenient locations around the city will be really useful for cyclists, as properly inflated tyres are so important in improving riders’ safety.”