TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Pumping the brakes on speeding in the Collar City. Reducing Troy’s speed limit to 25 miles per hour (mph) has the support of both City Council President Carmella Mantello and Majority Leader Sue Steele. The two Council representatives issued a joint statement of intent Thursday, aimed at moving the measure forward.
The leaders said, “we will co-sponsor legislation to reduce the citywide speed limit from 30 mph to 25 mph and school zones from 20 mph to 15 mph for action by the City Council at our October regular meeting.” City Council President Carmella Mantello says, “we’re providing the tools to our police force to lower those speed limits to get the message out that our streets are not going to be thruways; that our streets need to be safer for pedestrians, for children and for bicyclists city wide.”
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, when a pedestrian is struck at around 25 mph, they have a 25 percent chance of being seriously injured or killed. That chance of injury or death doubles to 50 percent when a driver is going around 33 mph and upwards of 75 percent at speeds of 41 mph and above.
“While I believe some streets warrant an even lower speed limit than 25 mph, this is a huge first step in making our streets safer and more pedestrian and bicycle friendly,” says Mantello. “Along with lowering the speed limits, enforcement, visible crosswalks, and signage are key. Ensuring safer and walkable streets for our neighborhoods throughout our city is critical.”
Speeding, according to Majority Leader Sue Steele is “one of the major concerns constituents share with me,” especially when it comes to traffic coming off Hoosick Street. “Folks look for every opportunity to not travel Hoosick and that requires them often to go through what used to be very quiet, residential neighborhoods and now they’re becoming thoroughfares. So, it’s not a simple solution but this is a start.”
Steele says she has held held neighborhood meetings regarding speeding and resulting traffic accidents. “The data is clear that a slight speed reduction results in significantly fewer fatalities. A citywide speed reduction is definitely in order,” says Steele.
Mantello added that lowering the speed limit by even five miles per hour on city streets has proven to improve safety outcomes for motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists in other municipalities. “This is common sense legislation and one simple solution to protect the public and work to prevent tragedies,” she said.
New signs will need to be installed throughout the city, should the proposal be accepted. “We’ll need to get a cost estimate on replacing the signs and determine whether we can fund completely in the 2023 budget or consider a phased-in approach,” noted Steele.
Governor Hochul inked legislation last month allowing local governments to decrease speed limits unilaterally as low as 25 mph. Area communities, including Albany, are eyeing such a reduction.