Cllr James McKay promotes  20 is Plenty
Cllr James McKay promotes 20 is Plenty

Birmingham City Council has today launched a consultation into proposals to reduce speed limits on 90% of the city’s roads to 20 mph.

The 20 is Plenty changes would affect mainly residential roads, with most main arterial routes keeping higher speed limits. Birmingham City Council is putting forward the proposals based on a government recommendation to make roads safer, aiming to reduce the number of road accidents and deaths.

Anyone who lives, works or travels in Birmingham is being asked to put forward their opinion.

Cllr Tahir Ali, Cabinet Member for Development, Jobs and Skills, said: “By reducing speeds we can reduce the number of accidents on our road and save an estimated £5 million per year. The increased levels of safety will encourage more people to get out of their cars and onto their bikes or feet, taking traffic off the streets – making our transport system more sustainable in the process.

“We think 20 is Plenty, in the context of these proposals. However, I urge everyone to have their say during the period of public consultation on an issue that affects everyone in Birmingham.”

It is estimated that any scheme would take between five and seven years to cover the whole city, at an estimated cost of £7million, of which £0.8m would come from the council’s recently-successful bid to the Government’s Cycle City Ambition Grant scheme. Other funding will come from sources already allocated for transport improvements, so will not impact on other services the council provides.

Cllr James McKay, Cabinet Member for a Green, Safe and Smart City, added: “Where this type of scheme has been introduced in other towns and cities and on a limited basis in Birmingham in the past, the benefits have been enormous.

“Traffic speeds, collisions and casualties all decrease, so now is the time we should consider doing the same.

“The overwhelming majority of our roads are residential or near places such as schools, shops or parks. We need to ensure they are as safe as possible and 20mph speed limits are one of the most effective ways to do this.”

To find out more and take part in the consultation:

•    Visit to read more and complete an online survey
•    Pick up a 20 is Plenty leaflet and questionnaire from your local library, neighbourhood office or leisure centres
•    Attend an exhibition – Northfield District exhibition will take place on Monday 25 November 2013 between 3-7pm at Weoley Castle Library, 76 Beckbury Road, B29 5HR
See the 20 is Plenty website for more dates across the city

The consultation will run until November 29th and a report outlining the findings and final proposals will be presented to the city council’s Cabinet in early 2014.


  1. i really dont think that would be a good idea it is pedestrians that need more education and maybe car drivers need to be educated on bikes the statistics on road accidents are better than 20 years ago and we have 40% more drivers so we are going in the right direction education education education thats the answer

  2. Have you ever driven at 20mph, its mind numbingly slow and a massive risk due to drivers wanting to get to work, friends or the shops at reasonable speed. We are not in 1920 when life propelled merrily along at 20mph. We live in a passionate, driven, pressured society where people are worrying about loosing their jobs before Christmas, never mind driving slower than a milk float. Safety has everything to do with adequate policing, education and effective road planning and nothing to do with victimising hard working, tax paying people that want to get from A to B in a car, not by push bike or on foot. People who pay an absolute fortune for car insurance and road tax already. This idea is the latest brain-wave of a council who are grasping at straws to save face after being sighted as the laughing stock of England due to their wasteful policies and ideas. It will cost millions to implement, will frustrate anyone caught up in it and cause more deaths than lives all down to trying to avoid paying for Speed Cameras. Please this is totally and utterly the stuff of Private School cloud cuckoo land!!!!!!

  3. They havn’t managed to stop drivers driving without seat belts, insurance, tax and MOT or using mobile phones yet. With regard to speed, i had a police traffic car following me on the Bristol Rd a while back as i proceeded at the correct speed of 40mph, not wanting a ticket. Yes, i was in the outside lane as the nearside one was full and intended to turn right in any case in a short time…the police car was perched almost on my rear bumper with no reason (no flashing lights or siren). As i took my right turn for Bournville Ln the police car swerved to the left of me and raced ahead with a scowl on the drivers face….one rule for them springs to mind.

  4. If you do not live in the country or you are not disabled, do you really need a car? Eating up the oil which once gone will be gone…no petrol, no oil based plastics and a host of other essential things. A lot of city car drivers are just selfish when they could take the bus or the train. I think the 20 mph limit is a wonderful idea and will make the city a cleaner, safer and quieter environment for us to live in.

    If you have no time to add a bit on your journey and work too hard, then maybe you should change your job and you could sell your car and treat yourself to a bus/rail pass and bank the left over cash and just consume less and save money.

    Car drivers will play the ‘hard working family’ card and being ‘victimised’..what about the pollution, adults and children killed by cars and also the noise? I hope the council has the guts to impliment this and not give in to whining narcissistic car drivers.

    • John. i agree with one poiint you make that oil is a finite resouce.
      Drivers are selfish? maybe but the motor car has given a generation the ability to move freely for jobs, holidays or even to go to the shops etc.So they wont give that up without a fight.
      its not about saving time its mobility and self control.Look at it from a drivers poiint of view , you have mobility, warmth or air con, comfy seats, listen to yorr own music and you actually know who is sat next to plan your own route and have control over timing etc
      The 20’s plenty use lobbying tactics to get their point across. The stats dont add up Portsmouth for example isnt safer since 20mph. City of london has just had 5 cyclist mown down ina 20 mph limit by lorries and bad driving…etc
      many roads in brum are by there very nature cnat go any faster!
      Cleaner? cars driven at 20 mph are dirtier as are lorries, and buses .
      Quieter? err no cars will be runningat higher revs at slower speeds.
      I think the bigger issue here is the city needs a proper thought out integrated transport system for the next 20 yrs, but sadly doesnt have it yet.Or else its grildlock for 2030

  5. I am opposed this proposal. It is just utter nonsense. The comments from John are just reiterations of the cloud cuckoo land crew. Sorry John but not all drivers are narcissists. Has it ever occurred to you that not everywhere in Birmingham has good transport links and for some people a car is essential. Its not a matter of being selfish. So should people give up their jobs and live cleaner, but risk seeing their children and family starve. If everyone gave up their jobs to live a cleaner life companies could collapse causing job loss and poverty to other people, and furthermore there would be so many people using public transport that the current system would implode under the burden upon it.

    Furthermore there is a lot of anti-social behaviour on public transport and some people just feel safer having a car. I can honestly say that there were times when I felt at risk on the bus, and the council seems to do nothing about these yobs, so although I can see that you believe that one day the world will be a perfect green glen to live in, but I think you need to be a little more realistic.

    Furthermore, buses still pollute the earth and trains, albeit I accept that the pollution rate per head count would be lower. Adults die on buses and trains is you had not noticed, and casualties are often greater and more severe in nature.

    I would much rather be ‘selfish’ and use my car to support myself than give up my job, when jobs are hard to come by. I would much rather work and pollute the world then be out of work and become a burden to others.

    Finally you seem to have confidence that the government will actually enforce this limit. Ha! Think again. It will make NO difference whatsoever. Can you really see the police arresting people for ‘speeding’ at 30mph? Please this is a joke. If it gets implemented, you will see that it wont be the idyllic Garden of Eden you think.


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