School Streets, Cycling, Walking and Sustainable Transport

Yesterday, I attended the Place, Services, and Economic Growth Scrutiny Committee at Essex County Council.

We received a presentation about ‘School Streets’, LCWIP’s (Local, Cycling Walking Infrastructure Plans), and sustainable transport (e-scooters, cargo bikes) and what progress the Council has made with rolling out the initiative and its future plans.

I asked a number of questions and one of the most important, I felt was whether they intend to run a consultation on the rollout of ‘school street’ schemes. I know that parking around schools can be a highly sensitive subject. It’s not only difficult for headteachers to address, but also for local authorities and Councillors.

Rochford District recently moved from ‘red’ status to ‘yellow’ after I’ve worked with RDC officers and the Portfolio holder to fund the plan

The problem shouldn’t be ignored though, as the safety and health of children should be of paramount importance to us all.

The debate was interesting around the subject and no doubt we will see more of these schemes rolled out over time although given the lack of budget I’m not sure how quickly.

During the meeting I also asked about:

  • Has/will a consultation been carried out with schools/parents on school street strategy?
  • Will it be the ECC policy for new schools and planning permission designs out the need to travel by car
  • School streets – how? Where do we start?
  • SEPP let us down / Camera Enforcement?
  • Cycling – Annual monitoring report for schemes. Cycling for leisure. Does this help shift the mode.
  • E-scooters – Plans to increase the rollout of e-scooters – what’s the hold-up?
  • What work has been done with organisations that represent people with visual impairments in the trial of e-scooters. Has the council engaged with these groups?
  • How will district Councils  fund the LCWIP?
  • How much does it cost for an LCWIP’s?
  • How is ECC supporting  District Councils to produce LCWIP’s?

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About the author 

James Newport

Essex County Councillor for Rayleigh North, Rochford District Councillor for Downhall & Rawreth and Rayleigh Town Councillor for Sweyne.

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