Hills Road Bridge consultation

Please respond. Deadline 13 January 2006. We are advocating option C but modified to provide on-road provision for the bridge and the adjacent junctions.

Large numbers of cyclists using the road. Would they really use a narrow shared-use path? Hills Road bridge at the Cherry Hinton Road junction, 12 January 2006 about 9am
Large numbers of cyclists use the road

The County Council is proposing changes to both Hills Road railway bridge (map) and the junctions at either end.

See our letter responding to the public consultation.

The Council’s consultation and a form to make responses can be seen at:
http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/transport/projects/cambridge/hillsroadbridge/

See also the four options put forward by the County Council and the Council’s response form.

The Campaign was involved in earlier discussions with other stakeholders. But we are very concerned that none of the four options subsequently proposed for bridge improvements included any specific provision for on-road cycling despite the fact that over 4,000 cyclists currently cycle on-road on a typical day.

We are extremely worried that if only ‘shared-use’ paths are provided cyclists will be seriously disadvantaged as:

  • The shared use will not cope with the volume of cyclists and pedestrians at peak times including those from massive new developments nearby.
  • The bridge would remain a gap in the on road cycle lanes when most of the rest of hills road has them. (Our surveys show more people use the ‘on road’ lanes than the shared use in the rest of Hills Road).
  • It will be difficult for shared use cyclists to go straight or right at either end of the shared use.
  • Cyclists that remain on the road will face intimidation from motorists who believe they should be on the pavement.

We understand that there is also a need for shared use as some cyclists may otherwise need to cross the road twice, and others, especially those with young children, or find the bridge and junctions intimidating.

The Cycling Campaign has written asking for ‘option C’ but modified so it has 1.5m ‘on-road’ lanes and 3.1m shared use. We believe only ‘option C’ can be modified to provide this.

We had hoped that that this variant would be included in the public consultation and are disappointed that no references were made to the need for on-road cycle provision.

The Campaign believes that with option C, road lanes of 1.5 metres would still leave sufficient space for ‘shared-use’ paths for those cyclists who prefer it or who would otherwise need to cross the road twice in a short distance.

Please do respond to the consultation, ideally supporting option ‘C’ but stating that on-road provision for both the bridge and the adjacent junctions is essential.