WESTFORD — Updated speed limits are coming to select roads in Westford.
Proposed speed limit reductions, which were approved during Town Meeting in June, are slated to take effect by the end of the week.
Following a long-standing recommendation from the Pedestrian Safety Committee, the Select Board unanimously voted to establish a 25 miles-per-hour speed limit on sections of Main Street, West Prescott Street, Pleasant Street and Patten Road during a Jan. 24 meeting.
This changes comes after a majority of voters authorized the Select Board to establish speed limits at Annual Town Meeting last summer.
The changes will impact the entire length of Patten Road, two sections of West Prescott Street and Pleasant street from approximately 25 Pleasant St. to 30 West Prescott St. Office and Main Street from 33 Main St. to 117 Main St.
The sections of West Prescott Street, Pleasant Street and a portion of Main Street have 25 mile-per-hour speed advisories, which are currently unenforceable by the Westford Police Department.
These roads were chosen as they are considered “thickly settled” areas, where homes are within 200 feet of each other and have high pedestrian and bicycle traffic.
“The short list we came up with was to make them [Westford Police Department] feel comfortable and make sure they can enforce the limits and we stay within the boundaries of the state as to where this can be set,” Chris Barrett, chair of the Pedestrian Safety Committee, told the Select Board.
He continued, “I think the Pedestrian Safety Committee would like to see this expand in the future and the segments we’ve laid out before you is the first step.”
Speeding fines, which are set at the state level, are set to rise for motorists in violation of the new limits. A speeding fine is $100 for any speed up to 10 miles-per-hour above the posted limit, and increases $10 for each additional mile after the first 10 miles-per-hour.
For example, a motorist driving 40 miles-per-hour at the current speed limit would pay $100. Under the 25 mile-per-hour limit, they would pay $150.
Residents who want a 25 mile-per-hour speed limit in their area are encouraged to contact the Pedestrian Safety Committee.
“We encourage any residents to feel free to engage us and we can talk with our partners at the Westford Police Department and town staff to make sure its appropriate and then bring forth that recommendation,” said Barrett.
The Public Works Department expects to install new signage by March 10, weather permitting.