Parking problems predicted at new Waverley school - two years before opening

Parking problems predicted at new Waverley school - two years before opening

By Gareth Dennison | 19/10/2018

Parking problems predicted at new Waverley school - two years before opening
An artist's impression of the proposed Waverley Academy

CONCERNS have been raised over parking problems outside a primary school — two years before it opens.

Plans for Waverley Academy have been drawn up by Rotherham Borough Council for the growing community, which will eventually have nearly 4,000 homes.

Occupation of the 550th property released funds for designs for the school, which will be funded by landowners Harworth Estates under a section 106 planning agreement.
But the council’s own plans accept that there could be problems from the increased number of vehicles at pick-up and drop-off times.

Waverley Residents Association member Mark Lambert said parents were already concerned about traffic, with near misses happening often.

He added: “Cars already use the estate as a cut-through during rush hour and opening Highfield Lane will make this even worse.

“For parents to feel it’s safe for their children to walk or cycle to school, we need to see a new crossing, enough space for parents to safely drop their children off, and a rework of the junctions to improve visibility.”

The school — set to create 60 jobs — will have a capacity of 500 students, with future expansion beyond that figure a possibility.

The plans include ten classrooms for Key Stages 1 and 2, plus a garden area big enough for outdoor classes and resources for children with autism.

The nearby Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre has previously said it would be keen to work with and inspire pupils and the plans feature a dedicated science and technology area.

A design statement by the council said: “For approximately 30 minutes during school opening and closing times, it is accepted that there will be increased numbers of vehicles trying to park on surrounding roads.

“This could cause disamenity for residents living in close proximity. It is however stressed that this is deemed to be minimal given the proximity of the catchment area and therefore the numbers of cars is expected to be minimal. 

“Additionally, some drop-off facilities have been provided, and it is also envisaged that Waverley Walk will have parking restriction imposed on it.”

The issues are outweighed by the “desperate” need to provide education on the under-construction estate, which will eventually have nearly 4,000 homes.

The report concluded: “Such pressures for suitable education and pupil places will continue to be under increasing pressure should this application be refused.”

The Waverley development — on the former Orgreave pit site — will comprise 3,890 properties built over 20 years plus retail, leisure and health facilities. 

Early plans included two schools but this requirement was reduced to one.

Brinsworth and Catcliffe ward member Cllr Nigel Simpson said: “I have always maintained that we make sure we get this right at the beginning.

“I have put forward a plan for a Waverley overflow car park on council-owned land adjacent to the new junction at the corner of Orgreave Road and Poplar way.

“There will be some opportunity at the proposed shopping centre and we have discussed adding drop-off zones in local council areas and if necessary adopting group drop-offs, as may be trialed at Brinsworth Howarth school.”

A decision will be made by the planning board after consultation closes on November 2 and the council hopes the school — to be run by Aston Community Education Trust — will open in September 2020.

Caption = Artist impressions drawn up by Ellis Williams Architects 

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