Drop-off sums don’t add up

Alexia McCoy, Claremont

The story “School expansion irritation” (Southern Suburbs Tatler, June 14) refers.

Mr Williams seems convinced that his new development will solve the traffic chaos in Selous Road.

The Children’s Workshop management has, for the past 18 years, completely failed to control the traffic generated by 100 children. By referring to the chaos in Selous and surrounding roads, Mr Williams tacitly admits this.

The circular driveway on the Queen Victoria Road site holds a maximum of 18 cars at any one time. There are 18 parking bays, to be used by cars dropping off children as well as the 12 occupants of the flats on the site.

There will be 160 children, meaning that around 140 to150 cars must drop children, within a limited time period of about 45 minutes. The oldest children will be 12 years old; the majority will be under 10, and of these, around 100 will be pre-schoolers, under six.

Most parents will not stop and drop; the conditions will be too dangerous. A total of 140 into 45 minutes is less than 20 seconds for each car to enter, drop a child and leave – (which is) not possible.

Council has referred to the gate as “sub-standard”, meaning it is too close to the Belvedere/Queen Victoria Road intersection. Even if the traffic on the circular driveway keeps moving, the chaos caused by the school traffic will simply move from Selous Road to Queen Victoria.

Mr Williams promises cameras and strict discipline to ensure parents only park on site. As mentioned earlier, this control has been singularly absent in the past, but will suddenly work now, with nearly twice as many children?

It will be impossible to prevent parents who wish to avoid the crush on site from parking in any of the surrounding streets – they are public roads. In the case of Queen Victoria, school parking already disrupts traffic by creating a single lane.

Any children whose parents park in the surrounding roads, will have to enter the school via the only gate – the one where 140 cars will be jostling to enter or leave.