Council to implement 20 new School Streets
In line with commitments to improve air quality and road safety around schools, the council has this week agreed proposals for the School Streets Plan, an ambitious initiative to bring forward school streets across the borough.
Poor air quality is known to be particularly harmful to the developing lungs of children and young people. Outside schools, exposure to poor air quality is increased as a result of congestion caused by motor traffic, and idling cars outside the school gates – which can emit more harmful fumes than passing or through traffic.
As part of the Plan, the council will begin implementing school streets across 20 schools in the borough, over the next 6 months. All primary schools in the borough have been assessed as part of the Plan, with those with the most urgent needs brought forward in the first tranche of the roll-out.
School streets is a proven method of improving air quality and road safety. The works will see timed closures of roads outside schools, which will be enforced by either CCTV cameras or physical measures.
This will create a safe space for children, teachers, parents and carers travelling to and from school at peak times and will get parents to think twice about their travel habits – encouraging more sustainable and active travel methods, such as walking, cycling or taking public transport.
In line with the ongoing Covid-19 response, the school streets implemented will also ensure safety and social distancing around the school gates.
As laid out in the council’s Air Quality Action Plan, School Streets is just one of the areas that the council is taking action, to help improve local air quality, by reducing carbon emissions from traffic and increase walking and cycling across the borough.
As part of plans to reduce air pollution around schools, the council is installing an Air Quality Fence in Tottenham Hale at Holy Trinity Primary – a school previously identified by Transport for London (TfL) as one where air quality improvement measures needed to be made.
Cllr Hearn, Cabinet Member for Climate Change, Equalities and Leisure, said:
“Parents want School Streets, because they know they deliver cleaner air. I’m extremely pleased to see this Plan now agreed.
“The health and safety of our borough’s children and young people is a priority. The School Streets Plan will see vastly improved air quality and road safety around our schools, whilst encouraging safer and cleaner commuting options for all of those travelling to school.
“We are implementing 20 School Streets by the end of this financial year, with more to follow.”
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