Making the Case for Speeding

Not everyone likes the idea of slowing down, but sometimes advocacy for increased speed limits can come from surprising sources, like the editorial director of a UK journal for architects.

1 minute read

January 8, 2014, 1:00 PM PST

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Architect’s Journal Editorial Director Paul Finch is concerned with the downward trend in speed limits in the UK, most recently as a result of EU regulations for air quality, which would reduce the speed limit in parts of the UK to 60 mph.

UK regulators and environmentalists, says Finch, consider the punishment of motorists a “favourite pastime”: “What characterises these people is a wilful refusal to acknowledge the world as it is. They will not accept that the vast majority of journeys carried out in the UK are in cars, not on trains; they pretend that there is some sort of transport equivalence, and that if we poured millions more into the railway system everyone would stop using naughty cars and naughty petrol, thereby saving the planet.” Finch also cites “fuel duties, so-called congestions charges (which in reality are just another tax) and deranged parking policies” as additional evidence of misguided, anti-automobile policy.

Finch also raises concerns about the capabilities of planners and engineers to walk the talk: “At the same time as they plan to introduce 60 mph limits, the bureaucrats are also opening up hard shoulders on busy motorway stretches – so traffic can move more quickly!”

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 in The Architects' Journal

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