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Denver neighborhood streets could soon be reduced from 25 to 20 mph

Ordinance now in the hands of full city council
"20 is plenty" ordinance
Posted at 6:37 AM, Dec 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-06 08:37:03-05

DENVER — For many people across Denver neighborhoods, speeding in residential areas can be a problem.

"Speeding or going more than 25 mph is definitely an issue in the neighborhood, including down our side street," said resident Ronald Lambert.

With the “20 is plenty” ordinance now going to a full city council vote, the speed limit would be reduced on neighborhood streets from 25 to 20 mph. Ronald and his wife Karen Lambert aren’t completely sold.

"I am in favor of it in theory, but I honestly don’t know if it would do any good," Ronald said.

They said they believe something needs to be done to address speeding but aren’t sure reducing the speed limit will do the trick.

"Even if it is posted at 20, I don’t think people are going to go 20. It would be great, but I don’t believe that it is going to make a difference and the expense of changing all the signs — I don’t think it's merited," Karen said.

Denver City Councilmember Paul Kashmann said the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure estimates changing the signs across neighborhoods will cost around $1.2 million. For him, it is well worth the cost.

"We've had 77 people die on Denver streets so far this year. It's the most since we've been keeping records and obviously, we need to move the needle in the other direction," Kashmann said.

Kashmann said changing the speed limit is only one piece of a bigger plan.

"It's kind of a two-part package: to reduce the posted speeds, to encourage people to urge them to drive more slowly, and then making engineering changes on our roadways to cause people to drive more slowly," he said.

Still, some would rather see no changes and the money go toward something else.

"I think they should just leave it at 25. I think there could be maybe a little more radar or police cruisers giving out some tickets. I think that might help a little more," said one woman who was walking in her neighborhood and did not want to be named.

Before the end of the year, Kashmann said he believes a decision on Denver’s speed limits could be finalized.