US-style drop-off plan to cut school run traffic chaos at Birmingham's largest school

US-style drop-off plan to cut school run traffic chaos at Birmingham’s largest school

School run chaos at Birmingham’s largest school could be cut if plans for a new US-style bus and car drop off zone are approved.

The proposals for Great Barr School would allow vehicles to turn off the main road and drop their child in a layby before carrying on.

It is a system widely used in American towns where few children walk to school.

At present cars run the risk of prangs and shunts and children are at risk as parents pull in out to drop off and pick up youngsters from the school, as well as the neighbouring primary school.

The school, which has more than 1,800 pupils, is on the busy Aldridge Road which is a major route with buses and commuters.

Frequently the road is blocked as cars cut across oncoming traffic or turn in the road.

Cllr Keith Linnecor said: “It’s one of the largest schools in the country, with about half-a-dozen other schools nearby.

“It’s almost gridlock for an hour every day.

“Something needs to be done and while this won’t be the magic wand to make the problem go completely away, it should help.”



Great Barr Academy

The school has submitted plans to turn its large grassed front forecourt into a drop-of area.

It features separate lanes for cars and buses – the bus lane would have a wider turning area.

Cllr Linnecor added that the school is also considering running a school bus to ferry the large number of pupils from the Perry Barr area to offer a further alternative to the car.

He has previously hosted a summit of schools in the Great Barr and Kingstanding areas to share ideas on solving the school run chaos .

As a planning committee member, he has been an outspoken critic of schools, transport and education bosses over the failure to sort out parking chaos outside many schools.

Last October, s peaking about a school expansion he said: “Whenever schools expand we end up with smaller playing fields for more pupils, and more parking problems for residents.

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“The travel plans are never good enough. Nobody is going to enforce any parking restrictions, the police don’t have the numbers of officers and nor does the council have enough traffic attendants.

“Residents are going to be put upon and there’s no way around it.”

And in 2016 said that children should be made to attend their nearest school rather than travel miles across the city to ease traffic congestion.

Great Barr School has not commented on the plan. The public consultation over the proposals runs until June 7.

A decision is due early in July.

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