My Letter to the Council Regarding our Roads

Like many of my constituents, I am concerned about dangerous driving and parking on Birmingham’s roads.

I have recently sent a letter to the Chief Executive and Leader of Birmingham City Council about the issues constituents have raised with me. I look forward to hearing from them about the Council’s plans to tackle this growing problem.

You can read my full letter to the Council below.

“Dear Ms Cadman and Cllr Cotton

Re: Road Danger Reduction in Birmingham

I am writing to express my concerns about dangerous driving and road safety in Birmingham.

Many of my constituents have contacted me recently to highlight their own worries and grievances. I have made enquiries to Birmingham City Council on behalf of my constituents but I am disappointed that most of the responses I have received state that measures can only be put in place when a certain number of collisions have occurred. I am concerned that the collision needs to have been reported to the police and at least one person injured. This is a reactive method and I believe the people of Birmingham deserve prevention techniques instead.

I have received many enquiries from parents and staff at schools across the constituency about dangerous driving and parking when children are being dropped off and picked up from school. The problems include parents parking on double yellow lines and drivers knocking over stands in the road designed to keep the children safe. I have recently been made aware of a ‘Park and Stride’ initiative at a local primary school, where parents park further away in a car park and walk the remaining distance to school. Could the Council work with local businesses to help further schools implement similar initiatives?

You will be aware of my work with Tiverton Academy in particular. I was disappointed with the response I received to this enquiry. Similarly to other responses, I was informed that the lack of personal injury collisions meant that this area could not be prioritised. I am disheartened at this response, especially given that young children are being put in danger by the driving and parking outside Tiverton. I agree with the statement in the response that the issues outside Tiverton do occur at schools across the city. However, I believe every school needs to be looked at contextually. For example, there is a bus route outside Tiverton and the wide catchment area makes it more difficult for children to walk and cycle to school than in other locations in Birmingham. I do not believe the unique features of Tiverton’s situation were considered in the response I received.

An area of particular concern to my constituents is Kings Heath and the immediate vicinity. I have spoken to many constituents about problems with speeding on Broad Lane and Brandwood Park Road. I have met with several constituents whose houses have been crashed into by speeding cars, leaving significant damage to their properties. 

I am concerned that the Low Traffic Neighbourhood in Kings Heath is pushing traffic into other parts of the area, which is simply moving these problems rather than solving them. Many constituents have raised similar concerns with me about the proposals for Bournville and Cotteridge. Therefore, we need a more holistic approach to make our roads safer, rather than a piecemeal operation.

Furthermore, I receive frequent complaints about speeding and dangerous driving in the constituency. I understand that the Council’s resources cannot allow for speed cameras and monitoring measures everywhere. However, has the Council discussed alternatives with West Midlands Police?

I would be grateful if you could provide me with a response to my above concerns and comments. I am keen to hear about the measures the Council is implementing to ensure road danger reduction across the whole of my constituency. I do not believe we should wait for personal injury collisions to meet thresholds before action is taken.

Yours sincerely
Steve McCabe MP
Member of Parliament for Birmingham Selly Oak”

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