CITY IN MOTION

Some Silver Zones to try out 30kmh speed limit

A Silver Zone crossing in Bukit Merah. These zones, with narrowing roads and wider centre dividers, were introduced in 2014 to make it safer for seniors crossing roads. The Land Transport Authority is planning to lower the road speed limit in some zo
A Silver Zone crossing in Bukit Merah. These zones, with narrowing roads and wider centre dividers, were introduced in 2014 to make it safer for seniors crossing roads. The Land Transport Authority is planning to lower the road speed limit in some zones from 40kmh to 30kmh in a trial next year. ST FILE PHOTO

Some roads in areas with a large population of senior citizens will have their speed limit lowered from 40kmh to 30kmh as part of a Land Transport Authority (LTA) trial.

The trial in these Silver Zones will start sometime next year, and may be implemented in other Silver Zones if found to be successful.

LTA did not specify the areas where the trial will be conducted, and said more information would be available at a later date.

Silver Zones were introduced in 2014 to make roads safer in areas with a large population of senior citizens.

This is done through measures such as the narrowing of roads to slow down traffic, as well as wider centre dividers that allow elderly pedestrians to rest while crossing the road.

There are 16 Silver Zones islandwide, with nine more under construction. By 2023, there will be 50 such zones.

Experts have suggested lower speed limits would reduce the number of accidents, as well as reduce the likelihood of injuries and fatalities in an accident.

According to the LTA, there has been a 75 per cent reduction in the number of accidents involving elderly pedestrians in Silver Zones.

 
 
 
 

The Straits Times reported last month a suggestion by British public health specialist Lucy Saunders to reduce the speed limit on all non-expressway roads to 30kmh to improve safety.

The LTA has also said it will continue to introduce "localised street improvements" - aimed at reducing traffic speeds and improving pedestrian safety - starting with mature estates such as Yishun, Ang Mo Kio and Tampines.

"The focus initially will be on locations where there are larger numbers of people travelling on foot and by car, such as those near town amenities and schools," said the authority in the Land Transport Master Plan 2040 report.

It also aims to do away with discretionary right turns - where motorists can turn when they determine it is safe to do so - and introduce red-amber-green turn lights at about 1,000 traffic junctions by 2023.

Safety features such as turning pockets and lit road studs will be installed in areas where such turn lights are not possible.

More than 150km of covered linkways connecting MRT stations, residential areas and other amenities will also be completed by 2040.

This is in addition to the 200km of such linkways completed last year under the Walk2Ride programme.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on May 26, 2019, with the headline 'Some Silver Zones to try out 30kmh speed limit'. Print Edition | Subscribe