Hancock moves to reduce speed limits on Denver streets after uptick in fatal crashes

DENVER -- Mayor Michael Hancock on Wednesday moved to start reducing speed limits on Denver streets after several recent fatal crashes.

The package of safety improvements along with the speed-reduction initiative is aimed to reach the city's Vision Zero goal of reducing fatal traffic accidents.

“More and more people are choosing to use different modes to move around our community," Hancock said in a statement. "We all need to be more aware and less distracted when we’re on our streets. "

"City government needs to do its part too. We’re going to keep pushing for more steps to reduce speeds and reduce conflicts between modes, so fewer and fewer people, until we reach zero, are losing their lives on our streets.”

Five corridors will have speed limits reduced throughout the fall.

Evans Avenue between Huron Street and Federal Boulevard will be the first, with the speed limit reduced from 35 mph to 30 mph by the end of August.

The other four corridors were not announced.

Officials say speed reduction is a top strategy for eliminating deaths and serious injuries on Denver streets.

“Denver’s crash data indicates a significant problem with speeding and one way we can address that is by reducing speed limits,” said Eulois Cleckley, executive director of Denver Public Works.

“Our speed reduction efforts will serve to protect all those who travel in Denver, but will benefit to an even greater extent, those who are most vulnerable -- people walking and biking.”

Besides the speed-limit reductions, Denver Public Works, the Denver Police Department and Denver Public Health and Environment will make infrastructure and enforcement improvements, including:

  • Installing more “in-street” pedestrian crossing signage, high visibility crosswalks and on-street bike corrals;
  • Enhancing protected bike lanes;
  • Increasing the number of driver feedback signs to alert passing motorists of their speeds;
  • Exploring additional low-cost safety treatments, such as shortening crossing distances, midblock crossing refuges and parking setbacks;
  • Promoting safe driving habits among Denver’s youth and improving safe routes to school; and
  • Increasing enforcement of traffic laws and unsafe behaviors on city streets.
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