ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Rev up those engines? More like pump your brakes. A proposition among city of Albany legislators could see speed limits reduced from 30 to 25 mph in certain areas. 


A stretch of S. Pearl St. around Old South Pearl Street saw that 5MPH reduction after seven year old Quasim Southerland was struck and killed by a car here in 2013. 

More streets across the city could see slower speeds if that proposition comes to pass. Albany Mayor Kathy Sheean at a meeting Monday night:

“…I 100 percent support the 25 miles per hour…”. 

So what does the public think of all this? 

“ I don’t know that people would pay attention and follow that and go 5 miles an hour slower as it is, people drive 5 to 10 miles above the speed limit…” said Albany Driver Dennis Blaine.

Christopher Chin is a pedestrian, cyclist, and former driver. He says personal responsibility for pedestrians and cyclists comes into play.  

“…You’re kind of responsible for your own self when you’re out here.  if you’re not paying attention, I feel like that causes most of the accidents…” he said. 

Albany is looking down the Hudson to New York City’s Vision Zero as proof of slower speed’s effectiveness. An outline for the program says pedestrians are half as likely to die if they are struck by vehicles doing 25 instead of 30. 

But Nakia Brown of Delmar who works in Albany wants to know if there are alternative life saving methods. 

“The crosswalks that I see in Delmar, where there’s a flashing light, so the person presses the button and so that kind of alerts you as you’re coming there’s a pedestrian” she said. 

Albany Mayoral Chief of Staff David Galen says the city tried alternatives like red light cameras — which they also are seeking approval to put in school zones — but says those measures aren’t enough. 

Albany council member Deborah Zamer who pushed the idea released a statement saying in short:

“…The old calculations that led to a standard 30 mph is obsolete in dense, urban environments.  Though I expect some exemptions on some larger thoroughfares in the City, on most side streets, 30mph is just too fast…”

The city wants to conduct a Vision Zero traffic study but that could take over 18 months, so it’s looking towards a study of their own which would take 6-8 months. If speed limits reductions occur they’d most likely be on select streets rather than the entire city of Albany. 

Don’t expect to see speed limit changes anytime soon. The mayor’s office says the entire process, if approved, could take about a year to complete.