The Boston City Council is considering reducing the speed limit to 20 MPH in Boston.
The council discussed the potential decision during a hearing Tuesday morning. The council is considering creating “safety zones” in various areas of the city where they would reduce the legal speed limit. If they do a city-wide reduction of the speed limits, they would need approval from the state but would not need approval with safety zones.
City Councilor Frank Baker, who is in favor of reducing the speed limit, said doing so is one step closer to safer streets in the city.
“This is a good first step,” he said. “I have always thought the speed limit should be 20 but there are more things we need to do.”
City Council Ed Flynn said pedestrian safety is one of his main concerns.
“A day doesn’t go by where someone doesn’t tell me about close calls at crosswalks and speeding cars,” he said.
In January 2017, Boston lowered its default speed limit on most streets from 30 to 25 mph. Before the change was made, a study showed there was a 50 percent chance of a pedestrian suffering a fatal injury in a crash. According to the city, there were 14 fatal crashes in the city, which was a decrease from 2016.
The council also talked about raising sidewalks and other changes they could make to help pedestrians feel safer.
“This needs to happen now,” said Baker.