Glasgow primary schools to trial car-free zones

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A Glasgow City Council schoolImage source, Glasgow City Council
Image caption,
Seven Glasgow City Council schools will take part in the pilot

Car-free zones are to be introduced around some primary schools as part of a move to keep pupils safe.

Glasgow City Council said seven primary schools are to trial the temporary pedestrian areas for 18 months to improve road safety.

The areas will be traffic-free at certain times while pupils come and go.

The council said the plans followed complaints about dangerous driving and obstructive parking near schools, as well as environmental concerns.

So what schools will be affected?

The schools chosen to take part in the pilot, and the roads affected, are:

  • Bankhead Primary School - Caldwell Avenue and Broadlie Drive
  • Broomhill Primary School - Elmwood Avenue and Elmwood Lane
  • Hillhead Primary School - Westbank Quadrant and Otago St, to junction with Gibson St
  • Lourdes Primary School - access road from Berryknowes Road
  • Our Lady of the Rosary Primary School - Lourdes Avenue
  • St Blanes Primary School - Arrochar Drive
  • Toryglen Primary School - Drumreoch Place
Image source, Glasgow City Council
Image caption,
Councillor Chris Cunningham says car free zones outside schools can "create safe spaces for young people"

Complaints and concerns

The schools chosen have been selected because of a history of complaints about the pupils' safety on the surrounding roads, as well as having a high number of pupils travelling to school by car. A start date for the pilot has not been announced.

It is seeking views on the plans of parents, teachers, locals and council staff.

Image source, Glasgow City Council
Image caption,
The council hopes pupils will be encouraged to walk or cycle to school

Councillor Chris Cunningham, convenor for education, said: "A number of initiatives have already tried to clamp down on poor driver behaviour, but problems that put children at risk still persist.

"In the circumstances we have to go one step further to protect our children. Car free zones outside schools can create safe spaces for young people at key points of the school day."

The school run around Scotland - journeys to school made by car:

  • Inverclyde at 30.1%
  • Glasgow - 30%
  • Shetland - 30%
  • East Renfrewshire - 30%.
  • Dundee - 24.1%
  • Aberdeen - 21.8%
  • Edinburgh - 16.4%

Source: 'Tackling the School Run', Scottish government (2016)

Councillor Anna Richardson, convenor for sustainability, said: "Unfortunately, Glasgow currently has the highest rate of pupils being driven to school compared to the other cities in Scotland.

"This amount of traffic heading to the school clearly impacts on the wider environment and creates road safety risks at the school gate."

The council added that it would measure the success of the pilot on the speed of traffic near the schools, the numbers of children walking or cycling to school, and the level of congestion around the schools.

Image source, Google
Image caption,
Broomhill Primary School will also be affected