Borders residents concerned over speed reduction near town

THERE are concerns that temporary speed restrictions near a Borders town have had the “unintended consequence” of making people drive faster, according to the council.

As part of Scottish Borders Council’s Spaces for People scheme, the speed limit along the back roads between Peebles and Peel was recently reduced from 60mph to 40mph.

According to SBC, consultation on the reduced limits was scheduled to take place in the spring, but has been brought forward due to “recent concerns raised by a number of residents” that drivers are now driving quicker.

The council’s overview page on the speed limit on the back roads reads: “We have received some concerns from residents who live along the back roads between Peebles and Peel who believe that the temporary signed 40mph speed reduction has had the unintended consequence of increasing vehicle speeds as drivers may now see the 40mph signs as a target speed instead of a maximum speed.

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“Due to the length of these back roads the council took the decision not to carry out speed monitoring a survey would only provide a record of a specific point.

“The intention was that the outcome of this trial would be determined by the views of the communities and road users, with feedback originally planned for Spring 2021, however as concerns have been raised recently the council are keen to determine views sooner rather than later on how the trial is being perceived locally.”

SBC is now calling on members of the public in the Borders to share their opinions on the temporary speed restriction.

Regarding the call for feedback, Gordon Edgar, the council’s executive member for infrastructure, travel and transport, said: “The council is keen to find out if the trial to temporarily lower the speed limits has made the backroads more appealing to walkers and cyclists, or if the speed limits should revert back to 60mph.”

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Mr Edgar, who is also an Independent councillor for Selkirkshire, added: “We are encouraging as many people as possible to share their views to help determine the future of the speed limit along these back roads, and ensure safer active travel.”

The questionnaire on the speed limit can be found here and is open for responses until March 28.

Border Telegraph | News