St Joseph’s Car Free Zone

by Columnist, Jordan Tennant

St. Joseph’s Primary School is to implement a car free zone despite having only 10 people in favour.

Vehicles dropping off or picking up will be banned from Park Lane and Ennisfree Road during the school’s rush hours next year.

Sheli Balfour who has a daughter at the school said: “I think it’s a good thing – my daughter was nearly hit by a reversing car last year. 

“When the school was built parking should have been addressed then”.

Only 20 locals responded to South Lanarkshire Council’s proposals with 90% agreeing measures are required to improve road safety and a “50/50 split” on whether or not the pilot should go ahead.

Similar to the feedback from consultations, opinions between parents and residents are divided.

76-year-old resident Iain Thomson said: “Drop them off further away from the school and let them walk, far better for them than being lifted and laid. It didn’t do me any harm when I was at school”.

Anne Marie Murray of Station Road, which is situated outside the proposed zone, is “sick” of parents parking on her drive and feels introducing the vehicle ban will just move the issue to neighbouring streets.

She said: “It’s been a nightmare since day one, parents think it’s alright to run up to the school and block driveways”.

The scheme will be enforceable under a temporary traffic regulation order.

Police Scotland will look at providing a presence on the first few days of the pilot but advised they could not guarantee this regularly. 

In relation to patrolling the area, Colin Smith of the council’s roads and transportation services said: “What we’re really looking for is a community buy-in to make sure everyone is supporting the scheme”.

It’s hoped the plans will have a positive impact on child safety and the environment. 

The vehicle free area will come into place in early 2021.

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