MSP hails crossing times as step in the right direction

Responding to questions from Lothian’s Green MSP Alison Johnstone, the Scottish Transport Minister today added his support to a charity’s campaign for more time to cross at pedestrian crossings.

Living Streets, which campaigns for a better deal for pedestrians, is urging the UK Government to review the assumed walking speed for crossings, which was first calculated in the 1950s. Their research shows that over three quarters of over-65s have trouble crossing roads in the allocated time.

The Greens want to see more research on why pedestrian safety in Scotland has not improved as well as a widespread rollout of 20mph speed limits and better street design. Recent figures led campaigners to describe Scotland as the ‘deadliest place in Europe to go for a walk’.

Alison Johnstone, Lothian MSP said:

“We need to put the needs of people on foot back at the heart of our street design, and there is a convincing case for longer crossing times. I’m pleased to see the Scottish Government backing this campaign, but there’s more they can do right now to improve safety for pedestrians. I want to see 20mph as the norm in residential and shopping areas and a complete redesign of our worst road junctions.”