Islington plans changes for main roads outside schools

Islington Council is considering implementing more school streets. 

Islington Council is considering implementing more school streets. - Credit: Islington Council

Islington Council is considering making environmental changes outside schools in Blackstock Road and Canonbury Road. 

Having introduced 36 schemes in its School Streets programme, the council is looking at projects outside Ambler and Canonbury primary schools.

School Streets have so far involved temporarily closing streets outside schools to motor vehicle traffic at drop-off and pick-up times, but the authority said this is not possible in these cases.

Instead, it has launched a consultation, until January 16, on widening pavements to move idling traffic away from the gates, introducing new areas of plants and trees, adding new stands for bicycles and scooters, and adding seating.     

Councillor Rowena Champion said: “Our School Streets make it safer and easier for children to walk, cycle and scoot on the school run, supporting a healthy upbringing while also helping to address air pollution and climate change.”

Previous School Streets projects have been backed by Keep Highbury Moving – a pressure group which opposes another council scheme, low traffic neighbourhoods (LTNs). 

A spokesperson said: “Since the implementation of the Highbury LTNs, Blackstock Road, particularly outside of Ambler School, has become a real problem with cars, vans and buses stuck in traffic with their engines idling.”

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They said widening of pavements would now "have no effect on pollution reduction will likely exacerbate traffic jams”.

Cllr Champion has previously championed LTNs.

She said in October: “It is no longer about transforming the streets for people to walk, cycle, wheel and just to be, it’s also about making Islington a resilient borough, making it greener, making it safer.” 

The council says the consultation results will "feed into finalising designs for the environmental improvements".

To take part, visit www.islington.gov.uk/environment-and-energy/pollution/air-quality/what-we-are-doing/school-streets/school-street-consultations

 Alternative formats for the questionnaire, including Braille audio or large print can be obtained by emailing schoolstreetsconsultation@islington.gov.uk

And copies can also be obtained by writing to Public Realm, 1 Cottage Road, London, N7 8TP, or visiting Islington Town Hall reception.

Consultation events will take place outside Ambler Primary School on Monday, January 10 and outside Canonbury Primary School on Tuesday, January 11 – both 9am-4pm.