Street ‘blighted by traffic’ to be closed to improve school safety

A primary school street “blighted by traffic” in Penarth will be closed during school run hours to improve safety and encourage active travel.

Vale of Glamorgan Council cabinet members yesterday approved plans to go ahead with a pilot scheme which will see Dryden Road next to Fairfield Primary School closed between 8am and 9.15am and later between 3pm and 4pm.

If the pilot is successful, it is hoped that the strategy can be rolled out and tested near other schools in the county.

The leader of the Vale of Glamorgan Council, Cllr Lis Burnett, said: “I know that that road, which is quite a small road, is blighted by traffic for the people who live within that road.

“Cars going to that area and manoeuvring are putting children at risk. I have talked to parents who have children [at the school] who drive there because they don’t feel safe with their children being out and about in that environment. It is actually a bit of a vicious circle.”

The Vale of Glamorgan Council’s cabinet member for neighbourhood and building services, Cllr Mark Wilson, said it was vital to try and improve air quality in the area and make it a “safer environment for parents and children to walk to the school”.

The pilot traffic ban will be in place all the way along Dryden Road, from its Junction with Tennyson Road to its junction with Wordsworth Avenue, from May.

It is proposed for the ban to be in place for 18 months, during which time the council will asses its effectiveness.

Vale of Glamorgan Council ward member for Cornerswell, Cllr Rhiannon Birch, said the council had been receiving complaints for years from residents who had found it difficult to access their drives during the school run hours.

The councillor gave her fellow members an idea of the congestion on Dryden Road during pick-up and drop-off times, with examples of “really dangerous parking” and “lots of parking on grass verges”.

She said: “I think this is going to be the way to go. I accept that it is experimental and that we are going to learn from it, but I think this is something we could be looking at outside several schools, not just this one.

“We should be using this as a trailblazer.”

It is expected that the council’s cabinet members will receive a report on the performance of the scheme in October, 2024.

 

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