Development plans for Oakfields site in Barkingside will add to traffic problems, say community group

Plans outlining the look of Redbridge in 2028 could exacerbate existing traffic problems in Barkingside, according to a local campaigner.

Redbridge Council is outlining its development and investment policies for the next 15 years, which could include building a school and housing on the Oakfields green-belt site.

The area, between Fencepiece Road and the Underground line, incorporating Redbridge Sports Centre, would be ideal for family-sized housing, according to the council’s core strategy review, currently out for consultation.

It could also house a polyclinic under plans.

But John Sharrock, chairman of community group Barkingside 21, said placing another school in close proximity to existing schools including King Solomon High in Forest Road would cause traffic congestion.


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He said: “A lot of people feel Barkingside is getting congested because of the schools. And I don’t think the council is able to resolve it.

“It’s pretty chaotic round here, when people are dropping their kids off and picking them up.

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“A school at Oakfields with people coming into the area, that would exacerbate the traffic problem.”

King Solomon will add Ilford Jewish Primary School to its campus from September, while intakes at Avanti Court Primary School in Carlton Drive and Mossford Green Primary School in Fairlop Road are set to go up. In a blog post on Barkingside21’s website, Alan Howe said the Oakfields proposals could cause a headache for the council’s highways department.

The council was unable to respond to queries before the Recorder went to press.

Other development plans being considered include a medium-sized supermarket and additional housing in Gants Hill.

And industrial sites along Chadwell Heath Lane could be redeveloped as part of investment in the Crossrail Corridor.

The strategy was originally adopted in 2008 but is now being reviewed in light of a higher than anticipated population growth.

A council spokesman said investment areas are identified based on transport hubs in and around town centres.

Cllr Alex Wilson, the cabinet member for planning, said: “We strongly encourage investment and look forward to welcoming a number of high quality developments in the years ahead. Our refreshed strategy will help us promote the best possible development to meet residents’ needs and economic aspirations.”

Responses to the strategy must be received by February 22.

Visit www.redbridge.gov.uk/ldf to take part.

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