Support for lowering Kirk Michael speed limit to 20mph

Kirk Michael village, which is currently a 30mph zone and has one pelican crossing

Kirk Michael village, which is currently a 30mph zone and has one pelican crossing

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The minister in charge of roads has said he would like to lower the speed of vehicles in Kirk Michael and is looking into the most practical ways of achieving this.

Infrastructure Minister Phil Gawne was responding to a question from Kirk Michael MHK Alfred Cannan asking if Mr Gawne’s department accepted the need for a 20mph speed limit in the village.

‘The challenge is that speed limits are not always the best way to actually slow the traffic down,’ he said.

Mr Gawne told fellow members of the House of Keys that research completed showed drivers tended to match their speeds to the characteristics of the road ahead and if a 20mph limit was simply imposed with no attention given to the characteristics of the road itself, drivers ‘almost universally’ tended to ignore it.

‘We are investigating how the road can be modified so pedestrians and cyclists feel more comfortable but traffic flow is maintained through the village,’ he said.

Asked by Mr Cannan about the timescale of any development, Mr Gawne said everything possible was being done to resolve the matter.

‘The road through Kirk Michael is also used as a race track so we have to be careful just what we do to modify it. This matter was ongoing before I was the minister,’ he said, adding the department engineers were still investigating.

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