Council needs to plan properly for 20mph limits

Having finally listened to Liberal Democrat calls for 20mph speed limits in Saddleworth’s villages, Oldham Council now needs to introduce fair and transparent guidelines for when they will be considered – and think ahead on what is happening when the current 18 month orders to implement them run out, says Liberal Democrat Councillor Sam Al-Hamdani.

A 20mph limit has already been introduced in Uppermill, and more are in process throughout Saddleworth, no current guidance has been issued as to what roads can be considered or when.

Liberal Democrat Councillor Sam Al-Hamdani said: “The system needs to be simple, clear and fair. Other Councils have rules in place such as considering an application after a set number of complaints from residents, or when there are particular considerations in the road layout, such as the road narrowing to a single lane, or having no pavement for pedestrian access.

Councillor Sam Al-Hamdani at the new 20mph zone in Uppermill

“A simple set of guidelines would make it clear to residents exactly what they need to do to get support, and exactly what problems the Council is looking to tackle.”

The Council also has no clear plan in place for what happens when the current orders, which last 18 months, run out. Councillor Al-Hamdani is calling on the Council to introduce an assessment process to see if the speed limits should be implemented permanently.

He said: “We’re already on the clock – the speed limits in Uppermill were introduced in September. We need to know what the impact of these new controls are, and whether that changes over the 18 months. The Council should consult with the residents who are most affected as well.

“Any lack of clarity leads to muddled decision making. People should know how decisions are being taken to spend their money, so that they know it is being done fairly, and so that they get to have their say.”

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