- Where: St Mark's School and surrounding area.
- When: November 2020 onwards.
- What: Transport and highways improvements to support St Mark's School expansion including an Active Travel Zone
- Why: To create a greener, safer and healthier school community for everyone by indentifying and making some small changes to the streets and roads around St Mark's School that will enable travel actively and minimise private car use.
We are now in the ‘Feasibility and Design’ stage of the St Mark's Active Travel Zone scheme, where feedback from the perceptions survey and suggestions provided by the local community during the co-design workshops on 10 March (more below), are being assessed by our design team.
In May, the most popular and feasible suggestions for improving the neighbourhood for walking and cycling will be presented back to the community as potential schemes. Details of the proposed schemes will be sent to residents for them to comment on and will also be posted on this page.
St Mark's ATZ Co-design workshops
Members of the neighbourhood and businesses around St Mark's C of E School were invited to attend our online co-design workshops on 10 March. Thirty-one residents worked together to explore potential measures for addressing their concerns - including through-traffic, speeding and parking - in the following key areas:
- Malmesbury Road / Stafford Road / Suffolk Avenue
- Shirley Road
- Greville Road / Thornbury Avenue / Darwin Road / Howard Road
In each group, participants’ comments and suggestions were recorded on a map, as you can see in the examples below. Click to expand each image:
After discussing a range of potential measures for each location, including their own suggestions, participants were asked to vote on them. Here is a summary of the results from the four groups showing the most popular measures within each area:
Our design team will now assess the input from both the perceptions survey and co-design workshops in detail. We will present the potential schemes for each location back to the community in May.
St Mark's ATZ Perceptions Survey
116 respondents answered questions about travelling in and around the St Mark's area. They were asked what areas could benefit from improvement, and what improvements areas require. The survey was available from 14 December 2020 to 15 January 2021.
91% of respondents live within a 20-minute walk, 83% are residents and 19% are parents of children at the school
60% of respondents travel to the area on foot:
9/10 survey respondents felt that the area around St Mark's School could benefit from improvement, with the main concerns in the area being:
- pavement conditions
- air quality
- traffic noise level
- provision of cycle lane/paths
- ease of crossing roads
Malmesbury Road and Shirley High Street/Road are the roads that are most in need of improvement and the most mentioned improvements were reducing through traffic and reducing the speed limit.
St Mark’s C of E School is a primary school located on Shirley Road and currently has capacity for 420 pupils. The school has been identified for expansion to help meet that need for additional school places across the city. The St Mark’s expansion project received planning approval in February 2020 and will provide an additional 900 secondary school places, creating a new an ‘All Through School’ providing education from nursery to Sixth Form on the site, along with sports facilities to the rear on part of the of Services Playing Fields.
St Mark’s C of E School is within in a 20-minute walk of over 13,000 households. Around 65% of pupils currently walk, cycle or scoot to the primary school and 12% use public transport. However, the area suffers from a high volume of cut-through driving. With the extra trips that the additional school places will create, there is a requirement to deliver measures to improve transport and travel in the local area. The council is proposing to achieve this through the delivery of a new Active Travel Zone in partnership with the local community.
We are undertaking engagement with the local community to understand what improvements could be made to the area. We firmly believe that the best ideas always come out of the community and invite you to share your thoughts and suggestions by taking part in our perceptions survey. All feedback received will help to closely inform our plans for the area as these continue to be shaped and developed over the coming months.
What is an Active Travel Zone?
An Active Travel Zone seeks to develop a neighbourhood so it is easier to move around on foot or by cycling by reducing and removing traffic and creating an attractive and safe environment. Measures could include restrictions to motor vehicles which seek to create a more attractive environment for pedestrians and cyclists by removing through traffic, reducing speeds, reallocating road space and creating healthier communities. An Active Travel Zone is developed in partnership with the local community.