ROADS boss Dave Harling has promised to look at creating a pilot 20 mph zone without humps or chicanes around Witton Park.

The move comes as a response to a petition from 115 residents in ten streets concerned about speeding cars.

Coun Harling, Blackburn with Darwen council’s executive member for highways, revealed that a long awaited report by officials on the effectiveness of imposing 20 mph speed limits without physical traffic calming measures would be presented to senior councillors next month.

The petition came from the Witton Park Residents Association.

It asked for the lower speed limit for Cartmel Road, Grange Road, Grant Road, Selous Road, Franklin Road, Markham Road, Nares Road, Vardon Road, Nansen Road, Speke Road and the adjacent back alleyways.

On Thursday, the request was considered for the second time by the council’s planning and highways committee.

After checking traffic flows and speeds on the relevant streets, officers recommended that the request for the new 20 mph limit be refused.

But Meadowhead ward councillor Carl Nuttall called on his colleagues to reject their advice.

He said: “We have been talking about introducing more 20 mph limits and the need for a pilot area to trial them.

“This would seem to be the ideal area and opportunity to run a pilot. I think we should refer this petition back to the highways department to look at this.”

He was backed by Sudell Liberal Democrat councillor Paul Browne and his Bastwell Labour colleague Shaukhat Hussain.

Committee chairman Jim Smith agreed and said: “Let’s refer this back to Dave Harling and his team to have another look at as a pilot scheme.”

Coun Harling said last night (FRI): “Certainly we will consider it. My concern would be whether this is too small an area.

“What we are talking about is a pilot for 20 mph zones without physical traffic calming measures such as road humps and chicanes as we have used previously.

“We will be producing the report we promised last year on this for the March meeting of the executive board.

“As a principle, we think 20 mph zones are effective, but the question is how effective they will be using only speed limit signs and not physical measures.

“We have to consider these things against the council’s tight financial position.”