DCSIMG

School set to expand despite safety fears

W04338H14

W04338H14

A PRIMARY school has won planning permission to build a further seven classrooms to accommodate 210 extra pupils.

Controversy surrounds the plan, as many residents and local councillors fear the nearby roads will not be able cope with the extra traffic.

Lancing parish councillor Mary Hambin has campaigned to improve road safety around the school for more than three years.

She said the traffic at pick-up and drop-off times was a major problem for residents and parents, and a serious safety concern for children.

“My motivation is the safety issue for children,” said Cllr Hamblin.

“Cars frequently have to reverse along the road when children are coming out and little children can be below the mirror level,” she said.

“When you have got reversing cars and the road becomes a single lane with cars parked either side, it is very dangerous.”

Due to the scale of the expansion, a public consultation was held in September, 2012, receiving 40 written responses, the vast majority of which were from parents

Of the 40 respondents, 31 (77 per cent) stated that they approved of the proposal, while nine (23 per cent) were against.

The majority of concerns related to noise disruption to staff, pupils and residents during building work, disruption to pupils’ education, an increase in traffic congestion and the lack of parking.

A West Sussex County Council report stated that the potential impact on local roads had been dealt with ‘satisfactorily’ through the School Travel Plan, use of two new entrances and new parking restrictions.

It concluded the expansion ‘would not be detrimental to highway safety’.

Adur District Council and Lancing Parish Council supported the application, with the latter’s approval subject to WSCC providing a solution to the traffic problems.

Seaside School was approached for comment but was unavailable.

Permission was granted at the West Sussex County Council planning committee meeting on February 4.

 

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