After a deadly year on Austin's roads in 2015, experts want drivers to slow down.
And in order to get Austinites to do that, those experts are set to meet with Austin City Council's "Vision Zero" task force with the city's Mobility Committee Wednesday. At the meeting which starts at 3 p.m., advisors will recommend that Austin highways be set to 60 mph. They will also advise that the speed limit be 20 in neighborhoods and 25 to 30 on main roadways.
Even though council members can lower speed limits on local roads through a vote, they would first have to conduct a study in order to alter highway speeds.
The city of Houston is trying to get the statewide speed limit on local roads reduced to 25 mph from 30 mph. It only takes 24 seconds longer to travel one mile at 25 mph than 30.
And the advisory board presenting Wednesday said the effect of the reduction not only minimally impacts drivers, but greatly helps pedestrians. A pedestrian hit by vehicle going 40 mph has a 62 percent chance of survival. Reduce the speed to 20 mph and the survival rate shoots to 98 percent.