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Want to save lives? Redesign Boston’s streets

Your editorial calling for 20 mile per hour speed limits in built up areas in Boston to reduce crashes of all kinds is spot-on (“Yes, there’s a speed limit. Post it,” April 15). However, your solution to post more speed limit signs isn’t nearly sufficient. Instead, we need to reshape our streets for the speed we want. All streets have a “design speed” implicit in the way they are made. Most streets in Boston seem to be designed for 50 miles per hour; it’s not surprising, then, that cars drive at that speed. Retrofitting our streets is a big job, but it can start immediately and inexpensively with paint and street barrels following well known street-speed design principles. Everyone, including drivers, will benefit. This change will save lives.

John Tittmann

The writer is an architect and board member of the Congress for New Urbanism, New England Chapter.