Camera plan agreed for Coventry 'school streets' as first scheme made permanent

A scheme banning cars from using Coventry school roads at peak times has been made permanent. The move brought in as a trial last year aims to tackle school traffic problems at Knights Templar Way and two cul-de-sacs.

It means only residents of the area are allowed to drive down these streets at school pick-up and drop-off times. The scheme called a "school street" is one of many in the UK and the first to be trialled in Coventry.

An ANPR camera will also be installed to monitor the restrictions after evidence that many drivers are not sticking to the rules. It could be used to enforce the scheme, resulting in a fine of £70 for drivers caught out, but this depends on monitoring and would need a six-week consultation, a report said.

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A local councillor praised council officers' "marvellous work" and said it has been "long-awaited" at a meeting to agree the moves yesterday, 17 June. But Cllr Marcus Lapsa (Con, Westwood) added that he wanted enforcement straight away because of evidence that has been gathered since April.

"I think this is the only way we are going to get compliance," he said. Cllr Lapsa highlighted problems with people not complying with the scheme.

He said: "This was a trial for the city and wasn't as successful as it should have been from day one because of the lack of police enforcement and resources, which isn't the fault of council officers." Meeting papers admitted police were not able to visit the area regularly and it relied mostly on "self-enforcement."

But Cllr Lapsa added: "I know residents are going to be absolutely over the moon with this." Cabinet Member Cllr Patricia Hetherton (Lab, Radford), who made the decision, said: "Cameras will make a huge difference here.

"The most important thing is keeping our children safe. We all know how we felt this weekend with what's gone wrong."

Four other school streets are set to be rolled out in Coventry in September. These areas will also get ANPR camera monitoring and potentially enforcement, Cllr Hetherton agreed, due to lessons learned from the Knights Templar Way scheme.

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