Redbridge wanted to install CCTV enforcement cameras as part of the ‘Redbridge School Streets’ pilot programme. Funded by the Mayor of London and Transport for London, this programme supports the council’s continued action to protect children from air pollution and traffic and to promote walking, scooting and cycling during their journeys to and from school.
Redbridge Council Leader Cllr Jas Athwal said: “We have a duty to protect our children’s health, both as a council, and also as members of the community ourselves. Targeting congested areas outside of schools will cut down on pollution caused by traffic, and also make roads much safer for children. We know that air quality is a top concern for parents and that’s why we’re working on initiatives such as this to build a cleaner and safer environment for our residents and mitigate the impact pollution has on local young people.”
As part of a contract awarded through Skanska, Videalert installed the latest ONVIF-compliant HD cameras to enforce the no entry zones around three schools in the borough – SS Peter and Paul’s Catholic Primary School, Gordon Primary School and Fairlop Primary School. These roads would be closed to traffic at the start and end of the school day during term time.
The council installed signs to notify drivers that these roads could only be accessed by cyclists and pedestrians at the displayed times. Exemptions would apply to residents and businesses in the zone and blue badge holders requiring access. Non-exempt vehicles that enter the closed streets during the peak times would be identified by Videalert’s automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras.
Video evidence is transmitted to Videalert’s hosted digital video platform where evidence packs are viewed and validated prior to sending to the council’s back office system for the issuance of penalty charge notices (PCN). To reduce the number of appeals, PCN recipients can view still photographs and video footage of the alleged offence over the internet.
Susan Johnson, Head Teacher of SS Peter & Paul’s Catholic Primary School, added: “The whole community at SS Peter and Paul’s is delighted with this project which will improve air quality and reduce congestion around the school. It is already a much safer place for the children; thank you Redbridge Council.”
This pilot scheme extends Videalert’s longstanding relationship with the London Borough of Redbridge which already uses the system to enforce a wide range of moving traffic offences including restricted access, banned turns and box junctions. More recently, the council extended use of the Videalert platform to enforce parking restrictions and traffic management outside Isaac Newton Academy in High Road, Seven Kings. Within the first month Redbridge experienced an increase in compliance of 63%, a level of success that was unprecedented in civil parking and traffic enforcement.
An increasing number of councils are now adopting similar approaches to promote the healthy school streets agenda and raise the quality of air for children. Videalert’s flexible hosted platform not only makes it a quick and cost-effective process to deploy enforcement in the streets outside schools, but also allows the use of state-of-the-art air quality monitoring sensors that enable councils to demonstrate the improvements that are achieved.