Speed Cushion Pilot Project Drastically Reduces Vehicle Speeds in Cincinnati

With Vision Zero faltering around the country, maybe it's time to get back to the fundamentals of street design. An example from Cincinnati shows how street improvements can achieve significant improvements with relatively little expense.

1 minute read

February 15, 2022, 10:00 AM PST

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

A yellow sign street sign showing the symbol for a speed bump: a simple black bump.

Mai_justrace / Shutterstock

"Cincinnati's Department of Transportation & Engineering will be installing speed cushions throughout the city after their temporary use in Winton Hills significantly dropped speeds for traveling vehicles," reports Allison Babka for CityBeat.

The rubber cushions, "which look like two speed humps side by side," helped reduce average automobile speed from 37 mph to 20 mph since they were installed on Winneste Avenue in Winston Hills, according to a February 7 report detailing the effects of the pilot project.

Just 11% of vehicles exceeded the posted speed limit of 25mph after installation. Before that, 95% did," writes Babka for additional insight into the results of the experiment.

The pilot project and the report are the result of the city's Vision Zero initiative. In another recent Vision Zero pilot project, the city's Department of Transportation & Engineering in December began testing plastic curb extensions at the intersection of Hamilton Avenue and Pullan Avenue in Northside. "The curb extensions prevent motorists from passing in the parking lane, and force traffic into one travel lane, slowing speeds into the pedestrian-friendly neighborhood business district," according to the city's website.

As reported by Babka, the city of Cincinnati claims to have implemented 200 pedestrian safety projects in 37 neighborhoods in 2021. In 2022, the city has budgeted $1.25 million for more pedestrian safety improvements.

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