Four primary schools in Angus will trial School Friendly Zones to improve road safety, encourage families to walk, cycle or scoot and create a healthier environment around schools, when children return after the summer holidays tomorrow (Tuesday 15 August 2023).
Angus Council’s Communities Committee approved plans (on Tuesday 23 May 2023) to see traffic restrictions put in place on certain streets beside Maisondieu, Newtyle, Seaview and Muirfield primary schools in the morning and afternoon to help make sure pupils can arrive and leave school safely. Muirfield Primary School already has a School Friendly Zone in place on Timbergreens, the current proposal is to implement the same on School Road.
The trial has a maximum duration of 18 months and will stop vehicles from entering the streets within certain times except for emergency services, residents with permits and blue badge holders.
Angus Council’s Communities Convenor, Cllr Mark McDonald said:
“It’s great we can extend this to a further four schools following on from the success of the pilot schemes at Ferryden, Langlands and Muirfield Primary Schools. We’re also seeing positive results from the current trials at Andover, Carlogie, Letham, Liff and Southesk primary schools with early indications showing that the restriction of vehicles within the zones have meant better air quality, reducing the exposures of harmful pollution to children from vehicles.”
Angus Council’s Children and Learning Convenor, Cllr Lynne Devine added: “These trials continue to be an opportunity to improve road safety while creating a safer, more relaxed atmosphere for children and families walking and cycling to school.
“I look forward to seeing the evaluation following the 18-month trial to see how effective they prove to be but more importantly seeing the difference this makes to the health and safety of our children attending school.”
It is hoped that the schemes will be self-enforcing but Police Scotland will be enforcing the moving vehicle violation element of the School Friendly Zones, where an unpermitted vehicle entering the zone, past the upright signs during the restricted times, will be issued with a fixed penalty notice. Angus Council’s Community Enforcement Wardens will be enforcing the doubled yellow line element of the scheme that will be laid in association with the zones, to ensure vehicles are not parked in inappropriate locations around the school. Existing yellow lines and school markings within the zones and surrounding areas will still be enforced.
Anyone can object to the proposals provided the objection is received within the first six months of the restriction coming into force.
Before and during this trial, certain markers will be documented. These markers include air quality; traffic volumes; road accidents; congestion; and the uptake of active travel habits. Public perception of the proposals will also be taken into consideration when making the decision.
At the end of the trial, a report will be submitted to the council’s Communities Committee where council staff will either recommended removing the scheme completely or to make it permanent, depending on the results of the trial markers.
Residents living in the streets affected can apply for a permit exempting them from restrictions through Angus Council’s website.