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Question 9 - we asked:

Do you support major development of the A14? What do you consider the effects on Cambridge would be if or when this were done? What measures would you support to ameliorate negative effects on cyclists of any traffic increases in Cambridge that this might cause (estimates have been made of a 30% increase)?

We asked this question in these 3 divisions: Arbury, Castle, Fulbourn.

10 of the 14 candidates (71%) who were asked this question responded as below.

Those candidate(s) which were elected are highlighted.

Richard Graham JEFFS
(Conservative Party)

Expansion of the A14 is desperately needed to safely carry increasing traffic from the eastern ports. We have a wonderful Park & Ride system in Cambridge that is beneficial to cyclists by reducing the number of cars on the road. More could be done to promote it. Just off the top of my head, could motorists be held at the Park & Ride site to queue to get in to the city? Maybe they would get the bus instead?

Stephen Roger LAWRENCE
(Green Party)

My response to the A14 is that it is primarily a problem with freight. Therefore the solution involves moving "swap-body" traffic on to the rails, using a proprietary system such as Modalohr or CargoBeamer, with terminals located near Harwich (I think this is where most swap-bodies come from - Felixstowe is for containers) and the Midlands, to name the first two.

(Green Party)

No, I do not support major development of the A14. This would improve traffic flow for a while, but would then encourage more vehicles to use the road and we would be back where we started. The only sensible long-term solution is to put much of the freight currectly on the road back on the railway. Re-nationalisation of the railways, followed by massive investment in new and improved routes, would create new jobs and move towards a more sustainabe transport system. It would also dramatically reduce CO2 emissions and improve road safety and air quality.

If the A14 were to be improved I cannot see that this would have a significant effect on Cambridge city.


Yes I support a major upgrade of the A14 and so do the Lib-Dems (see Council meeting of April 18th).

(Labour Party)

I’m keen to reduce the amount of freight on our roads and to shift it to rail instead. Hopefully work on the Ely North junction will help to shift more freight coming from the docks at Felixstowe off the A14, but I’m afraid that kind of change isn’t going to occur overnight. In the meantime, the A14 is dangerous and operating above capacity. An upgrade is needed in order to allow the development at Northstowe (and potentially also Waterbeach) to go ahead. Without these developments, there would be a need to build much more housing within Cambridge itself, which would probably lead to drastic increases in density at the NIAB and North West Cambridge developments. In their present form, these two developments will have a marked impact upon Castle ward. I do not think it is a good idea to exacerbate this unnecessarily.

For all these reasons, I believe the A14 needs to be upgraded, but given its importance I’m very clear that there is a need for full consultation with residents and businesses and scrutiny by both the City and County Councils. In particular, I have major concerns about plans to fund the scheme through the imposition of tolling on part of the section being upgraded. The A14 is national infrastructure and therefore should ordinarily be funded by national government spending. The success of tolling schemes in the United Kingdom is, if we’re going to be extremely generous, patchy, and it may affect usage of other roads by traffic in unpredictable ways.

I do believe that any upgrades to the A14 should aim at minimum to maintain, and hopefully to improve, crossings over the route for non-motorists. Closer work will be needed here once we have more details of the specific scheme.

I’m a little sceptical of the upper estimates for increases in traffic due to A14 upgrades and would support more detailed modelling that also takes into account the transport impact of planned growth in the Cambridge area over the next two decades. But even as things currently stand Huntingdon Road is not a nice road to cycle, especially during rush hour. I would support measures to reduce the speed of those entering the city from the A14 and to improve safety for cyclists.

(Labour Party)

Yes, Labour supports the need to upgrade the A14 though the case for tolling has not been made. Details of the current government proposals need to go through full scrutiny at city and county level so that any impact on the city’s radial routes and the inner core roads can be looked at alongside the impact of the already planned growth of the city over the next two decades. The pre-emptive refusal to consider the scheme by the City Council liberal democrats before proper scrutiny by all members of the City Council might put it at risk and damage the economy of this region.

Belinda Margaret BROOKS-GORDON
(Liberal Democrat)

I am strongly opposed to major development of the A14. I have campaigned against the catastrophic expansion of the A14 for over four years. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aLKEs5HxT5I
I would like to see the lorry freight go by rail, get the speed down on the A14 and have cycle routes between some of the villages that have no option at present but to use a dangerous road.

Daniel Stephen LEVY
(Liberal Democrat)

As stated previously, I would support measures already being proposed by the Liberal Democrats to improve local cycle routes, as well as building new ones. This should be done along side investment in public transport and facilities for pedestrians that would reduce the number of vehicles on the road. I would also support the proposals for a 20MPH speed limit throughout much of Cambridge.

John George WILLIAMS
(Liberal Democrat)

No. Most of the capacity issue is down to HCV traffic most of which should be on the railway and poor driving (HCVs account for over 22% of traffic movements on the A14 and a quarter are travelling through Cambridgeshire between the container ports/RoRo ferries). At peak times there should be variable speed control and the banning of HCVs overtaking.

Nicholas David WILSON
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate did not enter a response for this question.

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.