Today the Council's Planning and Rights of Way Panel considered the planning application for the new
. Banister School
The new school will be open in September next year and will cater from a growing number of primary age pupils in area. The existing school is now very old and is long past its sell by date. It has for some time been the aspiration of many, including myself, to rebuild the school and extra government money secured last year by the City Council makes this possible. The new school is very good value for money and will be the quickest school build done in recent history in Southampton: just over 18 months from the decision to the school being open.
A large number of local residents were at the meeting and several spoke. It was good that everyone at the meeting was in favour of the new school although some valid local concerns were rightly raised.
A lot of work has gone on in recent weeks to try and get the best possible scheme, taking account of the views of neighbours.
As a result of local residents petitioning the City Council, several trees will be saved which were previously going to be lost. 3 lime trees will be protected. Also the planners asked that further consideration be given to saving the horse chestnut tree by Archers Road and if it is possible then the tree will also be kept.
The school has resolved to do everything possible to tackle concerns about congestion, with a 'Park and Stride' scheme planned, whereby parents who must drive drop their children away from Archers Road and walk them to school.
Maximum car parking has been secured on the site and the City Council agreed to make efforts to find temporary parking nearby during the construction phase so that teachers don't park in residential streets.
Also agreed today at the planning meeting was the application for the new Wordsworth School and a remodelled Moorlands School. Funding and sign off for the 3 schools was agreed at the end of last year by Conservative Councillors. It is great to see the schemes progressing.