New scheme to curb school-run congestion launched

24 June 2019

Scenes of congested roads around Brent primary schools are set to be a thing of the past, after a new initiative to ease traffic, improve safety and air quality at peak times was launched earlier today (June, 24).

The new 'School Streets' scheme, which is being piloted by Brent Council outside Harlesden Primary School and Wykeham Primary School, will see roads closed to all traffic other than pedestrians and cyclists in an effort to encourage more parents and guardians out of their cars as they take their children to school.

Residents who live on the two affected roads, Minet Avenue and Annesley Close can still drive down their road as usual, but all other motorists who drive down them during the peak times on school days in term time will be caught on camera and face a fine.

Cllr Shama Tatler, Brent Council's Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Highways and Planning, said:

"Residents, parents and schools have all told us that congestion around schools at the start and end the day is an issue, with people not able to get about, cars stuck idling in traffic, air quality issues being made worse and fears over safety increasing.

"While we continue to work with schools on travel plans, initiatives, physical changes to road layouts and in carrying out enforcement action, the launch of this new scheme is another step in the right direction in taking the car out of the school run.

"We will be monitoring this pilot and are already assessing where else this approach could be used. We need to be doing all we can to encourage active travel to and from schools as well as continuing Brent's work to improve air quality in the borough."

Sarah Wawn, Headteacher at Harlesden Primary School, said:

"We are in full support of this new scheme as it will help improve road safety outside our school. We hope it will encourage more families to walk or cycle to school, improving fitness and therefore reducing air pollution around our school too."

The pilot will reviewed six months in and at the end of the eighteen-month pilot, when a decision on its future will be made.