Elections

Local elections (County), June 2009: Market

Summary: Elections to Cambridgeshire County Council in June 2009.
Polling date: Thursday 4th June 2009
Division:
Candidates
(by surname):
  • Keith A GARRETT  (Green Party)
  • Sheila LAWLOR  (Conservative Party)
  • George B OWERS  (Labour Party)
  • Sarah C WHITEBREAD  (Liberal Democrat)

Questions for Market division candidates (7 questions)

Jump to question:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7 

# Question 1

There is a major shortage of cycle parking all around the city. Cycle theft is over 10% of all reported crime in the County. Do you have any suggestions for locations for cycle parking? Would you be willing to see a very small proportion of on-street car parking being replaced by on-street cycle parking in your ward? How will you progress towards a situation where every resident and every worker in each ward can keep a bike safe?

Keith A GARRETT
(Green Party)

The council should actively seek to add cycle parking where there is an obvious need. Removing parking spaces to add good cycle parking is an excellent idea that would show that Cambridge is moving away from cars and towards bikes.

The station has always been a problem. The area for cycling needs to be doubled in sized at least. This might be achieved with a multi-story cycle park or acquiring of additional land. CCTV and better lighting needs to be added at the station to deter bike theft.

Cambridge should require all businesses to have cycle parking for their workers.

Sheila LAWLOR
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
George B OWERS
(Labour Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Sarah C WHITEBREAD
(Liberal Democrat)

I agree cycle theft is a major issue, and more adequate cycle parking would be a great help in addressing the problem. In theory I am supportive of the idea of gradually reducing the number of car parking spaces to allow for more space for bicycles throughout the city.

Market Ward in particular is a problem, because it has the most over-subscribed residents' parking zones of the whole city, so much so that there is no pay-and-display visitors' parking in them. Any removal of car parking would not be welcomed by residents.

There are, however, locations where cycle parking can be provided without loss of residents' parking spaces which Lib Dem ward councillors have been and will be supporting. For example we have been trying to get cycle parking on the corner of King St and Manor St for 5 years but difficulties in avoiding damage to tree roots have held things up. I understand a new arrangement which avoids the problem has recently been agreed by the West/Central area committee.

# Question 2

Do you support our view that traffic policing (including fining of cyclists without lights or using pedestrian-only pavements) should become a greater police priority?

Keith A GARRETT
(Green Party)

The police should be dealing with cycling illegalities but they need to be seen to be fair. There is a general feeling that the police are not at pro-cycling as they could be. Incidents between cars and bikes should be treated as very serious given it is always a potential lethal situation. All police around Cambridge should be on bikes at some point to understand the issues.

Sheila LAWLOR
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
George B OWERS
(Labour Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Sarah C WHITEBREAD
(Liberal Democrat)

I agree cyclists who don't have lights, or go through red lights, should be a police priority. Cycling on pavements I would say is slightly less of a concern. Because of the number of shared use pedestrian / cycle paths in cambridge, sometimes cyclists might not be clear whether they're allowed on the pavement or not. The important thing is to cycle in a considerate manner, aware of other road users / pedestrians.

# Question 3

We believe that 20mph should be the norm for local streets in residential areas (as distinct from main connecting roads). 20mph would: greatly encourage walking and cycling; improve the quality of life in an area for residents; and would not delay car journeys significantly (because only the start/end of a journey would be affected). Do you agree that 20mph should become the norm for local streets in Cambridge and surrounding villages?

Keith A GARRETT
(Green Party)

I believe that all of Cambridge and surrounding villages should become a 20 mph zone. Wherever there are cycles and pedestrians it should be 20 mph. Above 20 mph should become the exception and only on roads wide enough to have solutions like hybrid cycle lanes to ensure that novice cyclists feel safe.

Sheila LAWLOR
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
George B OWERS
(Labour Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Sarah C WHITEBREAD
(Liberal Democrat)

Yes. Market ward is being used as a test case by the County Council on this issue, with pretty well all the residential streets in the ward covered by a pilot 20mph scheme. Enforcement will be key, but if it is successful, I would like to see 20mph limits in other parts of Cambridge. I know Kilian Bourke and Nichola Harrison are campaigning for this in Mill Road.

# Question 4

If the County Council's proposed Congestion Charge goes ahead, it is likely that the associated up-front money that would be received from the government to support prior improvements to public transport and cycling would be of the order of some £500m spread over five years. This is roughly ten times the amount the County currently receives for transport. If the scheme goes ahead, what would be your priorities for use of this up-front money?

Keith A GARRETT
(Green Party)

There should be a review of transport across the whole of the county showing where people need to travel to and what is the best method of getting them there. This is likely to include improved public transport to get people between towns and villages, altered road junctions to give priority to cyclists, limitation of cars into the congested town and city centres.

The changes should focus on people - getting them to where they need to be - rather than the current requirement of everyone needing to drive a car everywhere they go.

Sheila LAWLOR
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
George B OWERS
(Labour Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Sarah C WHITEBREAD
(Liberal Democrat)

I would like to see the money spent on improving public transport provision, and cycleways / footpaths, in and around Cambridge. The money should absolutely not be spent on building an Ely bypass, as was once proposed by the Conservative cabinet!

In terms of provision for cyclists, I would like to see decent cycle lanes - by that I mean hybrid lanes - introduced on all major routes around the city, where possible.

The important thing for the cycle improvements is that they are implemented properly, in consultation with groups like the cycling campaign. I would hate more shared use pedestrian/cycle paths, for example, but it seems the County favour these, if the new Addenbrookes access road is anything to go by.

I would also like to see some more radical and ambitious ideas for public transport looked into - underground tunnels, for example. It seems to me an underground system would work very well in somewhere like Cambridge, where the narrow streets are already struggling to cope with the number of buses. If we can't look at that with £500 million on offer, when can we?

# Question 5

Some cyclists have told us they feel unsafe riding alongside the two short stretches of Lensfield Road and East Road where car parking is allowed in spite of the heavy traffic. Such car parking narrows the space available considerably. Do you support removal of this car parking in the interests of improved traffic flow and the safety of cyclists?

Keith A GARRETT
(Green Party)

Having cycled quite a lot down both these roads I find the parking to be an obstruction. As arterial routes for both cars and cyclists, there should be no parking. Once you start to get the traffic and the cyclists moving you reduce congestion and get everyone to where they need to go faster.

Sheila LAWLOR
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
George B OWERS
(Labour Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Sarah C WHITEBREAD
(Liberal Democrat)

I have to say I have never particularly noticed this when cycling down Lensfield Road.

I agree East Road is no joy for cyclists. The stretch by the shops is a peak hour clearway but there is no way to stop cars stopping there to pop into the shops without a permanent warden presence which is just not going to happen. I'm not sure whether this is a battle that can be won, or what to solution is, to be honest.

# Question 6

As part of the Old Press / Mill Lane site changes, we would like to see the Downing Street / Mill Lane direction becoming the default priority direction at its junction with Trumpington Street. This would enable the high pedestrian and cycle flows to be catered for better. Do you support this idea?

Keith A GARRETT
(Green Party)

This seems like an excellent idea. I've watched huge queues of cycles build up here. This should also have the effect of reducing the number of cars coming through this part of the city centre which is just not designed for this level of traffic.

Sheila LAWLOR
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
George B OWERS
(Labour Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Sarah C WHITEBREAD
(Liberal Democrat)

That is an interesting idea to investigate. I used to work on Mill Lane, and that junction can be pretty difficult. The problem is that Trumpington Street - Downing Street is the main route to the Grand Arcade car park. That's clearly not going to change, so any new plan would have to allow for considerable traffic flow on that route.

# Question 7

Do you have any other general cycling-related comments or points? And what support have you given for cycling and walking, or sustainable transport more generally, in the past?

Keith A GARRETT
(Green Party)

Cambridge needs to change how it thinks about transport. With an aim of increasing the number of people in Cambridge city, they council need to understand that cars cannot be the main part of the transport solution. I would like to see us move towards a Copenhagen style of transport where the bicycle and pedestrian are king and cars are tolerated. This would benefit so many areas - health, community, environment, economy.

Sheila LAWLOR
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
George B OWERS
(Labour Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Sarah C WHITEBREAD
(Liberal Democrat)

Not really, only that I think it's very good that the cycling campaign do this, and I hope lots of people look at it!
I've been a member of the cycling campaign for the past year. Cycling is my main mode of transport since moving back to Cambridge. I did also cycle to work in London, but the bendy buses made it a bit hairy!

Camcycle is a non-partisan body. All candidates are given an equal opportunity to submit their views. Information published by Camcycle (Cambridge Cycling Campaign), The Bike Depot, 140 Cowley Road, Cambridge, CB4 0DL.