For the last 15 years, Bilbao has been pursuing a strategy of sustainable urban development.
In June 2018, the city began reducing the speed limit to 30 km/h with an ambition that this limit would eventually apply on 87% of its 477 km of roads, its triple aim being to reduce noise, reduce pollution and increase road safety.
The positive results seen in all three areas spurred the Basque city – which was named European City of the Year at the 2018 Urbanism Awards – to announce in September 2020 that it would be extending the 30 km/h limit to all roads within its 41.43 km² urban area.
Bilbao is therefore the first city in the world with more than 300,000 inhabitants to have introduced a 30 limit on all of its streets. Thanks to the city’s educational approach and the support of residents and businesses, the groups that were initially most resistant to the measures, in particular taxi drivers, traders and delivery drivers, are now happy to acknowledge that the lower speed limit does not cause them any problems and in fact improves traffic flow.