Elections – Cambridge Cycling Campaign

Elections

City Council by-election, May 2013: Abbey

Summary: Elections to Cambridge City Council in May 2013.
Polling date: Thursday 2nd May 2013
Ward: Abbey
Candidates
(by surname):
  • Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON  (Conservative Party)
  • Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS  (Green Party)
  • Peter ROBERTS  (Labour Party)
  • Marcus John Gilbert STREETS  (Liberal Democrat)

Questions for Abbey ward candidates (11 questions)

Jump to question:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11 

# Question 1

What experience do you have of cycling in the Cambridgeshire area?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

I have cycled in and around Cambridge

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

Great! I love biking!

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

I do cycle but in the main I walk around Cambridge. I think both are healthy and cheap ways to get around the city.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

I cycle occasionally, but I mainly walk as it gives me thinking time.

# Question 2

Cambridge is seeing massive housing growth, with tens of thousands of new journeys into the city expected daily. Given that building tunnels, knocking down houses, or providing new public transport is very expensive, would you agree that creating very high-quality cycling routes to encourage new people to cycle offers by far the best cost-benefit ratio for transport improvements that facilitate growth of the City and surrounding areas?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Yes - whatever solutions are considered, better cycling provision should always be included and regarded as an integral and essential feature of any proposals

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

With the inevitable increase in traffic in the centre, the key thing for me is that cyclists are able to travel on specific cycle routes, rather than overcrowded roads. Its not realistic for people to choose to cycle (EG) down Newmarket road, the Milton Road or Trumpington Road.

With those caveats, yes, cycling must play a central role in our future transport policy.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

Without good cycling and pedestrian routes the rate of growth would see Cambridge grind to a halt. Wherever possible given travel to work distances new developments must include high quality cycling provision. This will also be important for the proposed Marshall development north of Newmarket Rd, and include easy access to the new station.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

I strongly agree - provided that we also make sure there are good facilities for pedestrians.
In particular we need to ensure junctions are safe.

# Question 3

Do you support our view that traffic policing, of all groups of road users (cyclists, drivers, etc), should become a greater police priority, and that this should be evidence-based, namely based on the relative levels of danger presented by each such group?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Agreed

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

I don't see a great need for this. Police time is already under lots of pressure from various interest groups. I'd much rather they were deploying resources to combat domestic violence, for example. Of course, all policing should be evidence, rather than pressure group based.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

Cycling on some roads can be unpleasant when some cars and lorries overtake. The police should act against all road users who use the space poorly and it needs to run alongside an education programme.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

Safety has to be the prime concern for all traffic legislation and policing.
I believe that education is the key - it is more effective to

# Question 4

London’s Mayor has launched plans for proper prioritisation of space for cycling in London, with a 15-mile substantially-segregated route by removing traffic lanes from cars, three ‘mini-Hollands’ and more. Do you and your party support a new London-style bike plan for Cambridgeshire?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Where practical and where it can be done without creating bottlenecks or increasing overall congestion

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

Yes. Unequivocally.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

Yes, there is a lot we can learn from Holland though financing it might be a problem.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

We need to build a network of good cycle links covering the city. Whether we do this by removing car lanes or by building or improving off road cycle paths is going to depend critically on geography.

As well as the major projects, like the Chisholm Trail, we should take every opportunity to make the small improvements, like replacing iron work to make it more cycle friendly and improving junctions.

# Question 5

Do you believe that Dutch-quality cycle provision, with cycle tracks that are separate both from pedestrians and motor traffic and that have priority over side roads, should a) be included within all new traffic schemes and b) be considered and consulted on for all modifications to existing schemes?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Yes

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

Yes. Unequivocally.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

Yes but the width of some City roads may be a constraint.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

I lived in Apeldoorn for 18 months and the cycle provisions there do make it very easy for cyclists. But even in the Netherlands not all roads have separate cycle paths.

I would certainly press for all new through roads to have good provision for cyclists and pedestrians.

# Question 6

Do you support the principle of a considerable improvement for cycling along the inner ring road, in the form of a Newnham to Newmarket (N2N) cycleway? In our view, 2.1m wide cycle tracks could be achieved for much of this while in many places not affecting vehicle capacity.

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Yes, as long as it can be done safely

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

I would need to look more fully at the proposal, but anything makes cycling easier and safer, whilst providing space for more jounrneys has to be a good thing.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

Yes. I support reviewing this and having cycling and pedestrian priority on all roads from the inner ring road inwards.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

Being a rugby fan, one of the few cycle journeys I do make is from Newmarket Rd to Granchester Rd. so I am well aware of the problems on this route.

The Lib Dems are committed to improving key Cycle routes in the city.

# Question 7

Do you support our proposal for 'The Chisholm Trail', a cycling and walking linear park that would run roughly along the railway, joining up the Science Park to Addenbrookes? More details are in our Cycling Vision 2016 document. This high-profile scheme would cut journey times, give people a genuine, realistic alternative to car use and help the city cope with the population increase which will take place in the coming years.

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Yes

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

This is an excellent proposal, it would have my full backing if elected.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

Yes and so do the City and County Labour groups. It is vital to the success of the Marshall’s proposed development off Newmarket Road as well. It will pass through or alongside some sensitive green spaces like Lepers Chapel, Ditton Meadows and Stourbridge Common and so the County Council must work with local communities and ensure those spaces are recognised and protected.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

Yes

# Question 8

Do you support the provision of a cycle bridge over the River Cam and related cycleways alongside or near the railway bridge?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Yes

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

Yes.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

We clearly need an alternative cycle and pedestrian route to the new station than going over the Green Dragon Bridge and up Fen Road, which is not currently great for cycling as it is. Any new bridge though must take into account that Stourbridge Common is a nature reserve and in a Conservation Area. I want to see the County Council working with Abbey and East Chesterton communities and groups on any proposals.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

Yes

# Question 9

Newmarket Road, especially towards the inner end, is bad for cycling partly due to abuse of the bus lanes by cars. What would you do to try to improve it?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

More enforcement, through policing and maximising clear markings and signage

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

Yes, Newmarket Road is bad and dangerous. This is partly because motorists get angry as they are stuck in queues from the retail park. That said, the bus lanes are totally illogical as a driver, as you constantly have to pull out into the main traffic flow to avoid going into them. I think I would want riverside and the tow-path to be sign-posted from Newmarket road as a cycle-route to the town centre.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

Newmarket Road needs a thorough review and real change. It is a difficult and hostile environment currently for cyclists and for pedestrians and dominated by cars. The police also need to enforce bus lane restrictions including at the junctions.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

I know Newmarket Road very well and traffic has got worse over the years I have lived here.
The bus lane is so disjoint that it does not really help buses - so I would personally remove it.

There does need to be two lanes from the East Rd roundabout to Eastern Gate - but there is probably no need for more than a single lane beyond that.

This should allow for a dedicated cycle lane.

It does also need some extra pedestrian crossings as well.

# Question 10

Green Dragon Bridge currently has ‘cyclists dismount’ signs, which mean that people can legally cycle over it but that the landowner advises that people do so at their own risk. The Bridge is wider than many shared use paths over which there have not been complaints. Do you support our view that legal cycling should remain permitted, that the signs should read 'Cyclists give way to pedestrians' and that conflict would be reduced by removing barriers to increase the amount of space here?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

This is widely misunderstood, creating resentment between pedestrians and cyclists. Better clarification would be a significant improvement to the tranquility of this area

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

I have no strong views on this. Cyclist dismount signs are a reasonable means of enabling narrow bridges to be used both by cyclists and pedestrians, particularly young children.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

The Bridge is very well used by cyclists and pedestrians. The pub is also an important part of East Chesterton which has lost many pubs. I haven’t yet seen details of any proposals but I would want them to go through a full consultation and it is important that the local community has the opportunity to give their views.

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

Green Dragon bridge is a problem as it has high numbers of pedestirans and cyclists using it.

While it may be wider than many other paths, on many of those it is possible to step to the side.

I do not believe asking cyclists to dismount is the answer, as they take more space.

However, it is one of the few places where cyclists are the road users most likely to cause damage.

# Question 11

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 recent past?

Eric William BARRETT-PAYTON
(Conservative Party)

Safety of cyclists is the priority and all measures to improve the quality of the experience for cyclists and walkers in and around the City are to be welcomed. My work at Wandlebury has been my most recent conrtibution to encouraging walking close to the City

Oliver Charles Mathew PERKINS
(Green Party)

Keep up the good work, Martin.

Peter ROBERTS
(Labour Party)

I will be happy to work with the Cycling Campaign on initiatives and opportunities in Abbey. I also will push the County Council to fix the many potholes on our roads which stop some from cycling!

Marcus John Gilbert STREETS
(Liberal Democrat)

I walk to work, use my bike for journeys within Cambridge, use the train where I can for business trips within the UK or in Paris.

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.