Eastern Corridor Area Transport Plan

This article was published in 2000, in Newsletter 32.

‘Perhaps we can get facilities that will give real choice’

Those of you in the city who live between the river and Mill Road should have received a consultation leaflet about this plan. You should also have returned the comments form by the time you read this!

Like the Southern Corridor Plan that preceded it, this plan attempts to look at development pressures, and suggest measures that can be taken to reduce the transport effects of them. In this area it is expected that some 20,000 extra trips per day will occur if the sites currently in the Local Plan are developed. Under current laws, councils can agree with developers to either construct or provide money for projects which will reduce or eliminate the effects of extra traffic. Examples are where an industrial development provides an extra roundabout, or a housing developer provides school buildings or play space. These are known as ‘Section 106 agreements’. As Cambridge is already so congested, the City and County are co-operating to find schemes which will enable development to proceed but with limited or no growth in car traffic. Park and Ride is the most high profile of these.

Image as described adjacent
Site of the proposed new cycle bridge

So what’s in the Plan and how does it work?

Various schemes to improve cycle and walking access, traffic calming, bus priority, and Park and Ride are included. The total estimated cost of proposed schemes is £3.8 million and the cost will be divided among developers in proportion to expected trips generated.

Perhaps the biggest surprise is the proposal for a cycle bridge from Riverside to Chesterton (Simoco site). Good, this means there will at last be a non motor bridge that cyclists can cycle over. There is also ‘official’ recognition of part of the Chisholm Trail (see Newsletters 17 & 23): ‘Cycle improvements along the line of the Railway’ is in the list, but with no mention of a bridge adjacent to the main river-rail crossing. ‘Off-road links to Cherry Hinton’ (The Tins and Snaky Path) is in, as is the Sustrans National Cycle Route.

Image as described adjacent
Buildouts and a new island make Queens Road more dangerous

The Campaign will be responding to this consultation. It is important that high quality facilities are built. Perhaps we can get facilities that will give real choice for all those people who in the County’s ‘Travel for Work’ surveys say that they would cycle if there were more and safer routes.

The Campaign supports the City and County in their effort to find more money for options that reduce the use of cars, and hopes that some future ‘Northern Corridor Area Transport Plan’ will include a cycle bridge over the river on the line of the Chisholm Trail. This would enable some journeys that can take 30 minutes by car to be replaced by five-minute cycle journeys.

Jim Chisholm