School streets are car-free blocks beside schools that limit vehicle access during school drop-offs and pick-ups. This reduces traffic, creates safer environments and gives families the chance to walk or roll to school – boosting health and wellbeing, reducing air pollution and helping schools tackle childhood obesity. They are one of many ways that local authorities have been working with communities during the COVID-19 pandemic to promote safe and active travel. Go here https://school-streets.co.uk/
Community Engagement in School Street Design: A Key to Success
Almost 1100 school street schemes have now been implemented across the world, with many more underway. The majority are in Europe, although numbers in North America are growing rapidly. The success of school streets depends on bold leadership from politicians, particularly Mayors, and collaboration with large numbers of local stakeholders. The scheme is simple to implement and can be used in a range of settings.
The most successful schemes are those that involve the whole community. This includes energising the school community to support the application, holding public engagement events to answer questions and discuss the benefits of the road closures, and communicating regularly with local residents via letters, social media and face-to-face meetings. In addition, meeting with any local businesses directly impacted by the timed road closures and talking to them face-to-face is important in order to mitigate against any pushback.
It is important to note that the objective of the scheme is not to penalise parents or carers who need to drive their children to school. Those with Blue Badges are still permitted to use their vehicles, as are those with mobility aids. Those who do need to drive will be encouraged to park further away and walk the last part of their journey.