Consultation guide: GCP Haslingfield Greenway (Grantchester proposals)

Cover of the consultation booklet for the Grantchester section of the Haslingfield GreenwayName of consultation: GCP Haslingfield Greenway: proposals for Grantchester
(shortlink: tinyurl.com/GrantchesterGW)

From:
The Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP)

Format: Online survey OR email consultations@greatercambridge.org.uk  OR attend one of the in-person events mentioned on the consultation website.

Deadline: Midday on Friday 28 July.

Following two public consultations and engagement with the Grantchester community, the GCP has produced new proposals for the route of the Haslingfield Greenway as it passes through the village. The designs address concerns raised about the route potentially affecting the village’s rural character and the safety of road users.

View a summary of the plans in the consultation booklet and find more information on the consultation website.

Summary of Camcycle’s views

We are pleased to see the GCP developing the design for the village section in collaboration with residents: all Greenways should be benefitting from this type of detailed engagement. While many of the measures listed in the consultation will result in small improvements for people walking, wheeling and cycling, Camcycle is hugely concerned that the proposals overall do little to improve the existing situation for active travel users. Although significant investment is proposed for the Greenway, the designs presented will result in substandard infrastructure that is not fit for purpose and does not align with the overarching Greenway vision to make local journeys safer and easier and to deliver pleasant and sustainable routes into and out of Cambridge and for leisure purposes.

The proposals fail to address the retention of the pinch point at Burnt Close which introduces unnecessary difficulties for those on larger cycles and could create conflict between path users. We also still believe that a modal filter on Grantchester Road would be the most effective, cost-efficient and environmentally-beneficial option for the route, leaving the Baulk Path as it is. We’ve written a blogpost on alternative options for a safe, inclusive route from Grantchester to Newnham and encourage you to read this before completing the consultation survey.

Consultation guide

Note that all questions in the consultation survey are optional. We encourage you to answer as many questions as you can and include personal opinion and experience in the open text boxes.

Section 1: Grantchester Road and Broadway

Q3. To what extent do you support or oppose the proposals on the section covering Grantchester Road and Broadway?

Grantchester Road and Broadway proposals

  • Extending the 40mph speed limit on Grantchester Road from its current location south of Baulk Path, to the point where cyclists will join Grantchester Road on the approach to the village

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

Reducing the speed limit on this narrow and rural road will provide a safer environment for all road users.

  • Introducing a build-out on Grantchester Road on the approach to Broadway to slow down vehicles entering the village and provide a space for southbound vehicles to give way to oncoming vehicles

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

The build-out helps to reinforce the speed limit and allows cyclists to join the carriageway.

  • Providing a new footway for pedestrians on the eastern side of Grantchester Road

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Tend to oppose’.

There is only a short section of footway on the eastern side of Grantchester Road before it crosses over to the western side. A footpath along the existing permissive path would remove the need for this unnecessary crossing.

  • Introducing an informal crossing point on the eastern side of Grantchester Road in the form of a raised table and dropped kerbs

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Tend to oppose’.

As above, we believe this facility is unnecessary.

  • Extending the existing 20mph speed limit within the village north of the farm access point

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

20mph speed limits create safer and nicer environments for people walking and cycling.

  • Introducing a raised table and informal crossing opposite the Blue Ball Inn with optional rural-feel steps to provide a safer place for pedestrians to cross Broadway and access Grantchester Meadows

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

This table and crossing will provide better access to the Meadows. It is unclear why the steps are optional and who exactly gets to choose the option.

Section 2: Junction of Coton Road, High Street and Broadway

Q4. To what extent do you support or oppose the proposals on the junction of Coton Road, High Street and Broadway junction?

Map showing details of the Grantchester Greenway scheme within the village.

  • Undertaking junction improvements with sensitively chosen materials (in a roundabout pattern) with new crossings on each arm for pedestrians

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Oppose’.

Whilst the materials and junction geometry have improved, we have concerns over a design which is laid out in the style of a mini roundabout. Mini roundabouts have high collision rates for cycling and should be avoided. We would like to see the priority given to people travelling to and from Coton Road and Broadway.

  • Widening of the footway on both sides of Coton Road. The resulting carriageway narrowing would also act as a traffic calming feature

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Tend to support’.

We support widening the footway; however without some rationalisation of the parking there is a risk that a dangerous width will be created between a parked car and the kerb. LTN 1/20, the government’s cycle infrastructure design guide, says widths of 3.2m – 3.9m should be avoided. Further clarity around remaining widths and parking is required before we suggest completely support.

Section 3: Burnt Close and the M11 Bridge

Q5. To what extent do you support or oppose the proposals for the Burnt Close and the M11 Bridge section?

  • Introducing a traffic-calming raised table in a sensitive material on Burnt Close / Coton Road junction with upgraded crossing facilities.

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

This will slow vehicular speeds and allow people cycling to move onto Coton Road more easily and in a safe manner.

  • Realigning of the radius of the Burnt Close junction to slow down vehicles and provide more space for pedestrians.

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

This will slow down vehicles and provide safer crossings for people walking and cycling.

  • Undertaking carriageway resurfacing of Burnt Close

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

Burnt Close is in a poor condition and is in need of resurfacing in order for it to be an active travel route.

  • Introducing a three-metre-wide shared-use path at the southern end of Burnt Close to the M11 bridge.

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

A 3m wide shared-use path is a typical and suitable solution that is widely used elsewhere on Greenways projects.

  • The removal of the steps on the M11 bridge, to be replaced by a shallow gradient ramp

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Strongly Support’.

Removal of the steps onto the bridge will significantly improve accessibility of the route and this intervention is vital to the success of the Greenway.

Section 4: Other design considerations

  • Using appropriate materials – the selection of materials will be carefully considered to correspond with historical buildings and existing materials while reflecting the character of the conservation area.
  • Retaining open views – the designs will be developed to maintain key views along Broadway towards Grantchester Meadows. 
  • Enhancing a key arrival intersection (Coton Road / Broadway / High Street junction). 

Q6. Do you have any comments or feedback on the above considerations and features? 

These are Camcycle’s thoughts on the considerations mentioned. Please feel free to include similar comments in your response.

  • A path on the existing permissive route would have no effect on retaining open views along Broadway.
  • The junction with Coton Road, Broadway and High Street should not be progressed in the style of a mini-roundabout.
  • The use of high-quality materials is important and should respond to the context. However before improving the public realm, the necessary functionality of the route must be met. Money should not be spent on high-quality materials until the design principles meet people’s needs.

Q7. Overall, to what extent do you support or oppose the Haslingfield Greenway route through Grantchester village?

Camcycle recommends that you select ‘Tend to support’.

The GCP has worded this question in a way that binds together both the principle of the route and the quality of the proposal. As it states, the route provides the most direct connection between Haslingfield, Grantchester and Cambridge and therefore the opportunity provided by the route is significant. We are unhappy with the proposals as they stand, but strongly support the principle of the route.

Q8. Do you have any other comments about the proposals?

These are Camcycle’s thoughts. Please feel free to include similar comments in your response.

  • We believe a modal filter should be considered as the cheapest option and the easiest measure to implement.
  • A temporary Traffic Regulation Order should be put in place to assess how it is received and the affect on travel behaviours
  • If a path alongside Grantchester Road goes ahead, we believe it must be positioned either entirely on the west or east side of the road.
  • The width restriction on Burnt Close should be considered; without this pinch point being resolved the value of the route will be greatly undermined.
  • Camcycle has provided a number of alternative options for delivering the Greenway route near to Grantchester that should be considered.

Q10. If you have any other comments on the proposals, including any suggestions for inclusion on the design, please add them in the space below.

Please refer to our blogpost on alternative options for a safe and inclusive route from Grantchester to Newnham for suggestions.

Complete the GCP Haslingfield Greenway (Grantchester proposals) consultation survey on the GCP’s consultation website by midday on Friday 28 July.