TWO primary schools are looking forward to solving their traffic problems with the announcement of plans for new parking arrangements.
At Cortamlet Primary School in Newtownhamilton, a scheme has been approved by the Education Authority and is set to start early next year.
It will consist of a new, standalone car park on land beside the school.
A planning application has also been lodged for a new nursery unit and play area at Hardy Memorial PS in Richhill.
An important component of this will be a new traffic management system and extra parking to address congestion.
The nursery is expected to be open by September 2019.
The Cortamlet plan has been welcomed by DUP MLA William Irwin. He said the lack of proper parking facilities at the school has caused problems for many years, not just from a safety point of view but also in relation to the drop-off and collection of children.
He said: “The school is located on a fast stretch of road and this is great news for the principal, governors, parents and pupils.
“The school is a vital and vibrant part of the rural Newtownhamilton community and the news of this investment is most welcome.”
“I have asked DfI Roads to examine other safety measures including reduced speed limits and increased road markings in order to reduce speed and increase safety outside Cortamlet PS, particularly at peak times.”
Meanwhile, an Education Authority (EA) spokesperson confirmed that the plans for Hardy Memorial PS Nursery Unit are at the initial design stages and a planning application has been submitted.
He said: “It is anticipated that tender documents will be complete by December 2018 with contractors appointed and works commencing early 2019.
“Typically the construction of a new nursery unit takes six months. It is expected therefore that the new nursery unit will be complete and operational for September 2019.
“Cortamlet PS traffic management project is at an earlier design stage but it is anticipated that similar progress could be made to develop the project to construction stage by early 2019.”
Chairman of the Board of Governors at Hardy Memorial Jim Speers said he very much welcomed the new nursery proposal. “It is creating opportunities for the young children in the area,” he said.
The EA spokesman pointed out that the timescales are subject to planning and building control approvals and could change.