Sixteen more school streets will be rolled out across the borough, thanks to funding secured from Transport for London.
Last month, Richmond Council used emergency powers to ensure that three local primary schools were the first in the borough to receive ‘School Street’ status in time for the resumption of teaching in June.
Over the next few weeks up to sixteen schools will be identified and using an Experimental Traffic Order, measures will be put in place to ensure these ‘School Streets’ are up and running in time for September.
School Streets ensure a safer space for children around their school, contribute to reduced local pollution and encourage parents and children to opt for sustainable travel methods, like walking and cycling.
A School Street is where a road(s) around a school temporarily closes to all motor vehicles except those of the immediate road residents; thereby becoming a pedestrian and cycle zone during the school’s opening and closing times.
The measures at the pilot schools have been successful and therefore the Council applied to TfL for £216,000 funding to roll out the programme across the borough.
As with the first three ‘School Streets’ the first six months of implementation will be a consultative period, where residents, parents and the school community can feedback their impressions. Should the trials be successful, the Order will be made permanent.
Cllr Alexander Ehmann the Chair of Richmond’s Transport and Air Quality Committee, said:
“School streets are an integral part of our plan to reopen Richmond upon Thames in a safe way for our residents and teachers. This is one of a series of actions we are taking as we encourage the return of children to our schools. Prioritising pedestrians in some roads surrounding schools during drop-off and pick-up times will help do this effectively and safely.
“School Streets are a just fantastic, because they improve road safety, air quality and provide the physical space for social distancing around our schools. Sixteen schools more schools following the borough’s first three, is a stretching programme, but this council believes we have to be ambitious for our youngest residents.”
For more information or if you are a school that is interested in having a School Street, email: Lindi.firstname.lastname@example.org
– from a Richmond Council press release - 24 June 2020