Lord Mayor Graham Quirk will today announce plans for a Queensland-first safety initiative, designed to protect pedestrians and cyclists around Brisbane’s busy shopping, café and dining precincts.

Brisbane City Council will commence a rolling program to install dedicated 40km/hr safety zones at dozens of popular suburban areas with shops and cafes, to reduce the number of vehicle crashes with pedestrians and cyclists.

Cr Quirk said Council’s Civic Cabinet had this week endorsed the interim findings of a citywide pedestrian safety review and had immediately given the green light to a number of changes that would address pedestrian safety, including new reduced speed zones in busy suburban areas.

“Safety issues are not confined to the inner-city and are occurring at a range of locations in the suburbs where there are high volumes of people walking across streets outside of formal pedestrian crossings,” Cr Quirk said.

“Approximately 6,400 locations were nominated by the community through the Move Safe Brisbane survey as sites where safety was at risk, and a number of these were around busy suburban shopping precincts.

“The first locations for Council’s safety zones will be at Oxley Road, Corinda, and Old Cleveland Road, Stones Corner, which have both been locations for crashes where pedestrians have been hospitalised.”

Cr Quirk said that zones would be considered for dining and shopping precincts, where surrounding suburban streets had become pedestrian safety hotspots, such as within the Sunnybank shopping precinct.

“Council will install high-visibility signage and road markings, to create dedicated zones around these high volume pedestrian areas where vehicles are restricted to 40km/hr, to mirror Council’s popular and successful school zone program,” he said.

“School zones are helping keeping our kids safe and now this same program will boost safety for kids, parents, students, cyclists and other road users around shopping centres.

“These shopping zones will operate around-the-clock to cater for both daytime shoppers and evening diners, reflecting the long hours that people are visiting, and Council will consult with potential affected shopping areas about the changes.

“Evidence suggests that just as in the city, pedestrian incidents in the suburbs were also largely due to inattention and impatience, with pedestrians walking out in front of vehicles.

“The zones will be prioritised in areas where traffic-light pedestrian crossings are not viable, or where people are attempting to cross the road dangerously, without pedestrian crossings.”Cr Quirk said Council would now work with the State Government to seek approval for the changes, to have the first sites in place before the end of the year.