School Road Traffic Issues- An update

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We last posted about the traffic management of School  Road, Moseley  on January 29th. Scroll down through the posts to read it. 

We have now received a letter, copied below, from Gill Brook  –  Senior Transportation Officer – Birmingham City Council.

The council are proposing a trial scheme in which they will close School Road to traffic at a point between Greenend Road and Birches Close. This is slightly different to options 5a and 5b  presented at the meeting on 24th January in that the proposed closure is further along School Road. 
Closing the road at this point will have an impact on nearby roads with a potential for  displaced traffic to find another way around.  We are supportive of a trial but the exact point of closure is important to get right.  
The council have been advised that before a full consultation takes place they should carry out a wider engagement of residents to ensure people have the opportunity to comment. It isn’t clear how that engagement will be conducted but we will make sure that residents in the surrounding area are kept informed.
Gill Brook can be contacted  by email hereGill Brook

 

“Dear resident,

I am feeding back as a result of the two resident-led meetings that Birmingham City Council Transportation officers were invited to attend to look at and discuss potential options for a scheme to address the issues of safety on School Road in Moseley and Kings Heath & Brandwood wards.

Following responses collected from the meeting on 24th January 2018 where a number of different scheme options were put forward to residents, and further responses from local residents by email, 64% of those received were in favour of the option that would involve an experimental closure of School Road for motor vehicles at a point between Greenend Road and Birches Close.

From comments taken at the meeting on 24th January, and further comments from emails received, issues relating to parking on a number of roads in the area were highlighted – including parking at junctions reducing visibility, and vehicles parking on pavements.

Part of all of the 6 options put forward included a short length of one-way on Valentine Road from the High Street. This proved unpopular in the feedback we received, and will therefore not be taken forward.

I have been advised that before formal consultation on a proposed scheme happens, we should undertake some further area-wide engagement to ensure all properties in the local area likely to be affected by the closure of School Road as a through route have the opportunity to give their opinion.

The potential costs and logistics of an experimental road closure and any parking restrictions will need to be submitted through the usual city council channels in order to get funding agreed and allocated.

It is anticipated that this proposal can be submitted within the next month, and if successful, the consultation would take place after this. As we would like to consult as widely as possible with all local residents and businesses affected by the proposed scheme, we would anticipate this consultation taking place after the main summer holiday period.

We will try and arrange this as soon as possible after the beginning of September.

In the meantime, can I encourage you to have a look at our 20mph toolkits which can be downloaded at www.birmingham.gov.uk/20mph. These toolkits contain activity ideas and we also have a range of resources such as additional temporary signage, wheelie bin and car bumper stickers to help to bring great visibility to the reduced speed limits in the area. We would be happy to support any activities”.

Gill Brook  BA (Comb Hons)

Senior Transportation Officer – Transportation Behaviour Change

Growth and Transportation (Economy Directorate)

Birmingham City Council

1, Lancaster Circus Queensway

Birmingham

B4 7DQ

 

5 Replies to “School Road Traffic Issues- An update”

  1. Hi we live on GreenHill Road and it’s all ready like a race track some night with cars speeding to at least 50/60 mph. The simple way around the problem on school rd is to install high curbs and rails to the pavement to stop vehicles getting on to the pavement, also the main problem seems to be around school drop off time and pick up surely there must be away to stop them parking on school road

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    1. Hi Nathan. Thanks for the comments. Please make sure you send them to Gill Brook at the council. Her email address is Gill.Brook@birmingham.gov.uk Also the council should carry out a full consultation before any decisions are made – residents in Greenhill Road must be included in this (I live on Greenhill Road too). We will also publicise any information we become aware of.
      Best wishes Izzy Knowles

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  2. The issue here, surely, is as an elected representative, you really appear to be stopping Moseley from ‘getting things done’. There is a huge element of NIMBYISM here which steps from the inclusion of your own road being part of the sensible redirection and rethinking of vehicles using what is essentially a single carriageway rather then the much wider and safer roads of Billesley Lane and Oxford Roads. Both have traffic calming measure to avoid speeding and congestion that is such an issue for School Road. The key incentive for the extensive ‘research’ that many residents have noticed, experienced or monitored in the past two years is that an experimented proposal is just that. Try what’s been proposed and then monitor the difference. Kicking a temporary proposal into the long grass is simply no way to ‘get things done’.

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    1. Hello there. Thank you very much for your comment and feedback.
      I must point out to you that I am not an elected representative. I campaign on behalf of Moseley residents, but I am not a Councillor.
      I do get that people in School Road are looking for a solution. I totally support their campaign to get some action and I have supported this long before I got involved in politics. As Chair of Moseley Forum I offered to host a public meeting for the School Road Traffic Issues group – but it was declined.
      I do however, take exception to your accusation of Nimbyism. The reason this proposal has become controversial is entirely down to mis-management and lack of consultation and communication by Birmingham City Council. In January 2018 Councillor Lisa Trickett presented six options for traffic management in School Road to a self selected group of residents at a meeting which had been advertised almost completely via Facebook. She went on at that meeting to promise a full consultation and traffic impact reports before any decision was made.
      Instead of what was promised the wider community was suddenly informed in September 2018 that an experimental traffic order would be made to close School Road. The council have not given any indication of where they think the traffic will be dispersed to or reassurance it won’t cause or exacerbate similar problems elsewhere. I’ve stood and counted traffic over the past few weeks at a number of junctions to try and get a better idea of the volume and direction for myself. Over 100 cars an hour come from Ashfield Road onto School Rd heading towards Moseley in peak time. That is in addition to the 100 or so that come along School Rd towards Moseley from the roundabout. The council’s preferred alternative route for this traffic is Alcester Rd or Billesley Lane. However, what is to stop it coming down the more likely route of Greenhill Rd, which is also residential? Is the best solution really to push traffic onto similar residential side roads? As you point out, I do live on Greenhill Road and many of my neighbours have knocked my door voicing those same concerns. Currently they are asking for a consultation and traffic impact studies. They quite understandably want reassurance from the council that Greenhill Road won’t become the new rat run. We already experience speeding down the hill. If the volume of traffic on Greenhill Road increases in the first six months of a trial I think those residents are instead going to be loudly objecting to the closure itself.
      Also, although it is not to say an accident isn’t likely, there has not been any reported injury accidents in School Rd. However there have been several injury accidents and a fatal when a cyclist was killed in Billesley Lane, which has over 1000 cars per hour along it in peak time and it’s own problems with speeding and road rage incidents. Billesley Lane at Oxford Road is a very dangerous junction. Yet Billesley Lane and Oxford Road residents have also not been given a say. Many didn’t know about the scheme until recently. Again you could end up with many objections during the consultation period of the trial. Cambridge Road residents are similarly potentially affected and concerned.

      The council should have got it’s act together a year ago and thought this through. By opting to trial a system, no matter how innovative, that is designed to deal with traffic rat runs in a neighbourhood, rather than to address one small section of road, they really needed to have anticipated that the wider community would expect to be consulted and to be given sufficient information to make the best decision possible. The fact that over five times as many people signed a recent petition calling for a consultation than made comments at the initial meeting shows the strength of feeling for this.

      This council now need to take the lead and in doing so they should do everything possible to make sure this is not only the right solution to address the issue but they are not pushing the problem elsewhere and they have the community on side – otherwise we will end up back at the drawing board and no one is happy. A lot of money will go into this experimental scheme. We want it to work otherwise what is the point.

      I will continue to push for action for School Road and all the other rat runs and dangerous roads we have in the ward. I do get things done in Moseley, but I’m not an authoritarian, I communicate and do it with the community.
      I’d be very happy to meet with you to discuss this further and answer any concerns you have.
      Very best wishes
      Izzy

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