Speed limits to drop outside schools

Variable speed limits are set to be introduced outside four Invercargill schools in time for the beginning of the term.

Council has introduced changes to speeds throughout the Invercargill District, including reduced speeds in busy shopping areas and on some rural roads, as part of Waka Kotahi’s Road to Zero strategy.

Now the speed limits outside Ōtātara, Southland Girls, James Hargest Senior and Salford schools will be reduced to 30km/h during pick-up and drop-off times.

The variable speed limits will be supported by the installation of new electronic signage, which will be programmed to reflect each individual school’s pick-up and drop-off times and will change the posted speed limit to suit.

Invercargill City Council Group Manager Infrastructure Erin Moogan said Council and Waka Kotahi was working to design a transport system that would allow young people to get around on their own with confidence and freedom whether walking, cycling, travelling by scooter or by bus.

“There are several ways to achieve safe speeds around schools. Introducing variable speed limits is just one of the tools available to us,” Moogan said.

“Safety of our tamariki has to be the most important thing for most people and schools have been wanting this for some time. We’re pleased to be able to be part of the solution.”

Variable speed limits would be introduced outside all schools in a phased implementation, she said.

The first schools to have the speeds implemented were chosen to generally align with Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency risk ratings.

“This is our first step to all schools in our region achieving a safer transport system. We hope to have this implemented across all schools by mid-2024,” Moogan said.

“I think our community understands that reducing speed means the difference between a few broken bones and the loss of a life. We’re proud to be supporting these changes.”

For more information on the various changes in speeds around the district visit icc.govt.nz/speedreview