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Give input on new speed management program

Tuesday, July 23, 2019 by Ryan Thornton

Only five years remain for the city to meet its Vision Zero goal of eliminating traffic fatalities. Meanwhile, the number of people losing their lives on Austin’s streets is up this year over last year, taking the city even further away from that goal. To address the crisis, the Austin Transportation Department is yielding to physics with a plan to slow vehicles down with signage and other traffic-calming measures in the city’s most dangerous areas. With limited funds, the department will be aiming to stretch its dollars as far as possible to make the greatest impact on safety. As verified by numerous studies, the department acknowledges that relatively small decreases in speed can lead to dramatically better outcomes in the event of a crash, particularly for pedestrians and cyclists hit by a vehicle. Based on that principle, the goal of the program will be to slow vehicles to safer speeds that will have only minor impacts on travel time but could ultimately save lives. Before moving forward, the department is requesting input from the community about how the program can best achieve its goals. Residents are invited to an open house this Thursday, July 25, 5-7 p.m., at the Carver Branch Library, 1161 Angelina St.

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