The school run is the source of up to 25% of congestion on our roads in West Dulwich. Data gathered by the Sustainable School Run group shows that traffic on all of our roads drops when private schools are on holiday and still further when state schools are on holiday. Out of all of the wards in the Dulwich and West Norwood parliamentary constituency West Dulwich has the most through school traffic.
Part of this is due to West Dulwich’s location, with a lot of private schools in neighbouring Southwark attracting students from a wide catchment area. However, this is not sustainable putting incredible pressure on main roads like Norwood Road and Croxted Road and raising the levels of air pollution across the area. Even with the advent of the timed closures in Dulwich Village putting pressure on Croxted Road and the Herne Hill junction at peak times, the difference between school term time and the holiday time is staggering.
To help address this in Thurlow Park ward we have undertaken a variety of different steps. If your Labour candidates, Cllr Fred Cowell and Judith Cavanagh are elected we are taking the school run pledge – if elected we pledge to use all levers at our disposal to reduce school run traffic and make the school run more sustainable.
To make this happen we will do the following
- Improve and expand cycling infrastructure
We will expand and upgrade the Rosendale cycle lane, adding more pedestrian crossings to make the junction outside Rosendale school safer. There will be more cycle storage, locking stands and other infrastructure to improve cycle safety, including the Brockwell Park Crossing, to encourage more of the school run to be done on two wheels rather than four.
- Support school streets
We are proud to be launching a school street on Elmcourt Road in coming months, we will continue to support the Elmwood School Street on Carnac Street and campaign for better crossings at the junction of it. We will also use the improved crossings outside Rosendale to see if a school street is feasible in the area. We will also put resources into highlighting how school streets link together with improved pedestrian infrastructure to provide safe walking routes
- Promote Carpooling
We will support the Sustainable School Run campaign in their efforts to promote car-pooling and school mini-buses using app-based technology. We will also work on improving existing waiting restrictions and anti-idling measures around schools. This will ultimately mean fewer cars in the morning rush hours.
- Better Public Transport
We have already started fighting against any attempt to reduce the 3-bus route and support the instigation of permanent bus lanes on Norwood Road. We have joined Helen Hayes in campaigning against the reduction in rail services.
This is alongside our work on improving the flow of traffic at Herne Hill junction to relieve the congestion on Norwood Road and Croxted Road and other ongoing consultations on greening and traffic Thurlow Park Ward Councillors launched.
Making the school run sustainable helps everyone – it helps children get active on their way to school, it helps those who need to drive by lessening the amount of traffic on the road and it helps reduce pollution and improve the environment.