Putney Hospital site - new primary school
What is proposed?
Putney Hospital school
The council has purchased the former Putney Hospital on Putney Common and the Children's Services department is building a new primary school on the site.
Planning permission has now been granted for the new school, which will help meet the growing demand from parents in this part of Putney.
Putney Hospital, which is situated on the eastern edge of Putney Common, closed services to patients in 1998. It has remained vacant ever since.
The scheme also includes 24 flats at the northern end of the site for which planning permission was obtained in July 2010. Proceeds from the sale of the flats will help pay for the school.
The area of the proposed development occupies only part of the original former hospital and nurses site. Those areas of the original hospital and nurses' home sites including car parks and access roads, which are outside the proposed development site, are to be reclaimed as common.
A new access road and junction onto Lower Richmond Road and a new pedestrian crossing over Lower Richmond Road are proposed.
What type of school will it be?
The school would be an academy or free school, which means that it will be independent of local authority control. If planning permission is granted, it will provide 420 primary places from 2015 for children living in the west of the borough.
Who will run the school?
The school will be an Academy or free school. No decision has been made about who will be the provider and the final decision will be made by the Department for Education.
Why is it needed?
Wandsworth's birth rate has risen significantly over the last few years and this has resulted in significant pressure on primary school places. Consequently the council has already expanded either temporary or permanently 18 schools in the last 3 years.
One of the areas under pressure is the Thamesfield Ward. Projections indicate the need for at least an additional 1.5FE (i.e. 315 places) to meet the demand in this area.
Read more about the department's strategy for the borough's schools at www.wandsworth.gov.uk/betterschoolsmorechoice
What would it look like?
The proposed school is a two-storey building with external play space. The roof would be used as a multi-use games area, plus a range of small tree and shrub planting contained in raised planting boxes. The trees would be secured using underground 'guys' to prevent rocking and wind damage to the root systems.
There would be five parking spaces for school staff, plus a disabled space. Basement parking for 25 vehicles would be provided for the flats.
Will additional cars stop on the Lower Richmond Road?
Cars dropping pupils at the school would not be required to stop on Lower Richmond Road itself. A new access is provided off Lower Richmond Road leading to an internal access road and a designated drop-off and pick up zone. This area was designed with the primary purpose of removing traffic from Lower Richmond Road and to prevent any additional congestion from occurring. The School Travel Plan is prepared with the primary purpose of further reducing travel by private car and encouraging staff and pupils to travel by more sustainable modes including walking, cycling and bus use.
Why is the staff parking so low?
The council is looking to promote a positive and more sustainable travel strategy for the new primary school. Therefore to reduce the impact of traffic on the site the school will appoint a School Travel Plan Co-ordinator to manage, monitor and develop the travel plan once the school is open.
The travel plan will be explained to staff at job interviews and a personalised staff travel plan will be agreed upon recruitment. Parking on site will be by permit only, with a car share scheme established. There will also be a staff bicycle users group and secure cycle parking on site.
Initially numbers of staff and children will be quite small and the impact of additional traffic will be monitored and reviewed by the school. If additional measures need to be implemented these will be discussed further and agreed with the staff and parents.
Where do visitors to the school park?
Visitors to the school would be encouraged to travel by sustainable modes. It is considered that occasional visitors would arrive outside of the main pick-up and drop-off periods and would utilise space within the designated pick-up and drop-off zone.