As part of Camden Council’s policy to reduce casualties and encourage children to walk and cycle to and from school, the Council is proposing to introduce a Safer Routes to School scheme in your area, the funding for which has been secured from Transport for London (TfL) for implementation in 2006/07.
Hampstead Parochial School is a primary school set in the heart of Hampstead close to Heath Street and within easy reach of Hampstead’ underground station. It has 210 pupils aged between 4 and 11, with 75% of them living within 2 kilometres of the school, hence currently 40% walk and 10% cycle to and from school. The school is located in Holly Bush Vale, which is a narrow no through road with a few residential properties, a theatre and University College School Junior Branch (entrance also via Holly Hill) fronting it. Due to the close proximity of the two schools the road is heavily congested during school opening and closing hours.
As part of the Safer Routes to School initiative, Transport for London now require schools to submit a school travel plan, which identifies and set targets to reduce traffic for journeys to and from school, before they will provide funding for engineering measures.
Pre-consultation with the pupils has been undertaken to find out their safety concerns regarding their journey to and from school. The school has requested for a safe cycling route to school, as many more pupils would like to cycle to school if their journeys were made safer. Council officers studied the results of this and undertook their own investigation in order to arrive at a series of proposals. These proposals, explained below have since been discussed and agreed with the school.
The measures proposed are (see attached plan):
Proposal A: Provide cycle signs and carriageway road markings. Due to the parking layout and the lack of clear road width, it has not been possible to propose a dedicated cycle lane. However, the signs and carriageway road markings will highlight the presence of cyclists to other road users and provide cyclists with a clearly signed route, hence give them some measure of safety.
Proposals B, D and E: Widen the pavement at certain key locations along Frognal Gardens and Chesterford Gardens. This will reduce the crossing distance, increase pavement space and give a clearer view of oncoming traffic. Double yellow lines will be implemented with the pavement widening.
Proposal C: Provide a flat top raised hump with pavement widening on Frognal. This will improve visibility between drivers and pedestrians and also encourage drivers to slow down.
Proposal F: Provide a raised entry treatment at the junction of Holly Bush Vale and Heath Street. This will improve visibility between drivers and pedestrians and also encourage drivers to keep the area free for pedestrians to cross.
To be written
Q1. Do you agree with the cycle signs and carriageway road markings along Heath Drive, Redingto Rd, Frognal, Frognal Gardens and Church Row? NO
Q2. Do you agree with the pavement widening on Chesterford Gardens at its junction with Redington Rd? NO
Q3. Do you agree a flat top raised hump and pavement on Frgnal outside number 88? NO
Q4. Do you agree with the pavement widening on Frognal gardens at its junction with Frognal? NO
Q5. Do you agree with the pavement widening on Frognal gardens opposite No. 16? NO
Q6. Do you agree with the raised entry treatment on Holly Bush Vale at its junction with Heath Street? YES
The Camden Cycling Campaign finds its self in the undesirable position of having to reject a Safer Routes to School Scheme that for once had at least attempted to include cycling as a travel mode to school. However, we feel that the proposal is inadequate in terms of providing sufficient improvements to encourage parents to cycle with their children to school, let alone for children to cycle on their own. Painting signs on the road is not sufficient to create a route. As a minimum painted lanes away from parked cars and/or severe speed restrictions are needed. We also object to the pavement widening because we believe pedestrian crossings should instead be installed.