Planning decisions: some you win, but

This article was published in 2001, in Newsletter 36.

Cromwell Road

In March 2001 the City Council Planning Committee discussed a Planning Brief for the land between Cromwell Road and the railway. Part of this land will become high density housing developments, and one of the concerns of planners and local residents is the consequent increase in traffic. Cambridge Cycling Campaign wants a high quality cycle- and pedestrian route along the edge of the operational rail land through Cambridge. This route would provide a much quicker and more pleasant route to many destinations from these housing developments. We are pleased that, following our representations, the Planning Brief now includes the following wording:

Walking and Cycling -The site must be fully accessible to all users. Internally it must offer footpaths and cycleways that accommodate desire lines for movement. A route should be reserved for a link across the width of the site to enable access for pedestrians and cyclists to the cycleway/footpath that may be developed along the line of the railway lands.

Leica site

This site, which is opposite the station and next to the cycle bridge, is the subject of a planning application for high density housing. With little revision, excellent links could be made to our proposed rail corridor route. This plan has provision for ‘access to new rail developments,’ presumably a reference to ‘Platforms 7&8’, the rumoured extra platforms that would turn Cambridge station into a more conventional layout and which will almost certainly be needed if some of the proposed improvements to rail services are implemented.

24 Brooklands Avenue

Cambridge City Council have granted permission for 24 Brooklands Avenue (which houses the Royal Commission for Historic Monuments (RCHM)) to have some changes as part of a major upgrade. The Campaign objected to a proposed ‘security’ fence as this would close off the ‘preferred’ route of the National Cycle Network (NCN) south out of the city. Some people use this route to get to the main Government Offices site (itself the subject of a separate planning application) and the only alternatives for the NCN are either up the narrow footpath along Brooklands Avenue or alongside Hobson’s Conduit-prevented, we believe, by existing covenants. We are very disappointed that a Government department should obstruct the route of the NCN and that local planners have not prevented this from happening.

Jim Chisholm