Ambitious new 20mph zones for Harrogate's schools is 'landmark' moment says North Yorkshire Council
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Describing the council’s ambitious move as “testament to the collective determination of schools, families and councillors to respond to public concerns”, Coun Kean Duncan said the road safety initiative would involve seven schools in Harrogate:
Harrogate Grammar School
Rossett Acre Primary School
St Aidan’s Church of England High School
Oatlands Junior School
Oatlands Infants School
North Yorkshire Council’s executive member for highways and transport, Coun Duncan, said: “This is the most significant 20mph zone the council has ever introduced.
“Our plan will see 20mph limits introduced outside seven more schools and on nearby residential streets, meaning thousands of children can enjoy safer journeys every day.
“This landmark proposal is testament to the collective determination of schools, families and councillors to respond to public concerns and deliver ambitious action."
Local Liberal Democrat councillors welcomed the news, which they say, followed years of campaigning by local parents, schools, and Liberal Democrat councillors.
Coun Pat Marsh, who has been campaigning on the issue with local families for years, said: "The praise has to go to the parents and teachers who have worked long and hard to get this action, and it was my privilege to help campaign alongside them.
"What we now need is to bring about safer streets throughout Harrogate and Knaresborough, and make sure that this scheme is delivered."
Tom Gordon, Lib Dem Parliamentary Candidate for Harrogate & Knaresborough, said: "It was only a matter of months ago that Conservative councillors, were decrying our local Lib Dem councillors for wanting to make our streets safer.”
A proposed £585,000 package of sustainable transport measures for the west of Harrogate has also been announced by North Yorkshire Council.
Coun Duncan said: “We halted unpopular plans for phase two of the Otley Road cycleway to develop an alternative package of measures.
“This decision means we are now able to invest in signal improvements, new crossings, cycling improvements and new bus stops instead.
“This alternative package will be of immense and lasting benefit to all road users - motorists, cyclists, pedestrians and bus passengers.”
The National Productivity Investment Fund package will be used to deliver parts of the new 20mph zone, as well as upgraded signals at the Cold Bath Road/Otley Road/Arthurs Avenue junction.
There will also be improvements to bus stops along Otley Road, the crossing outside Falcon Chiropractic on Cold Bath Road, and a new crossing will be installed outside Western Primary School on Cold Bath Road.
Improvements will be made to cycle route signing, the crossing between Green Lane public right of way and Ashville College, and there will be new cycle parking and public realm improvements on Cold Bath Road.
Nursery Lane will be upgraded to allow cyclists to use as an off-road leisure route.
The first School Street initiative has started at Oatlands Junior School, whereby Beechwood Grove is closed to traffic at pick-up and drop-off times.
Members of the Harrogate and Knaresborough area constituency committee will discuss the proposed 20mph and transport package at a meeting on Thursday, September 14.
The plans will then be considered for approval by Coun Duncan, with the aim of implementing the measures early next year.