Plan To Drop Speed Limits In New Haven Gains Momentum

A plan to lower the speed limit on some New Haven streets is gaining momentum.

Supporters believe it would protect pedestrians and people who are behind the wheel. For some, the current limit of 25 miles per hour is too high.

"People are still going down that at 30, 40, 50 miles an hour," said Peter Webster, Chairman of the Wooster Square Community Management Team.

"Many people go through that intersection a lot faster than 40 miles an hour, said Elaine Piraino-Holevoet, discussing the intersection of Trumbull and Orange Streets. She supports a plan by Richard Furlow, an Alder in the city.

"Slow New Haven down, make it more pedestrian friendly and bike friendly," said Furlow. He said the speed limit needs to drop from 25 to 20 miles per hour on many city streets in densely populated residential neighborhoods.

"I think that 20 is a great idea," said Webster. Members of the Wooster Square Community Management Team are taking matters of safety into their own hands, recently securing funding for a permanent solar-operated speed limit indicator to let drivers know when they are going faster than they should be.

"Anything that we can do to bring the speed limit down and make people really drive in a civil fashion is going to help the city," said Webster.

Though there is much support in New Haven to drop speed limits, the Office of the State Traffic Administration (OSTA) would have to ultimately approve the changes.

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