Core Scheme stage 3 consultation

This article was published in 2003, in Newsletter 46.

We reported in the last Newsletter that, subject to final consultation, councillors had approved the part-time closure of Silver Street to non-authorised vehicles, as the third phase of a series of traffic management measures to improve the city centre environment. Cycle access would remain at all times.

  • Option A: Between 6 am-10 am, and 4 pm-midnight, through traffic would be allowed through the closure point (between the bridge and Queen’s Road) in both directions
  • Option B: Between 6 am-10 am, only eastbound traffic would be permitted through the closure point. Between 4 pm-midnight, only outbound traffic would be allowed through the closure point.

The scheme also involves twelve other measures along the inner ring road, including:

  • upgrading the Queen’s Road-Garret Hostel Lane junction to a Toucan crossing, so that it is legal (and easy) to cycle across it, and
  • converting the cycle crossing at Gresham Road-Gonville Place to a Toucan crossing.

The dates of the consultation process are now available. There will be public exhibitions of the two options, on the dates shown in the table below.

Silver Street
Silver Street

Information is available on the County Council web site:

The consultation leaflet asks for your level of support separately for each individual measure. The closing date for the consultation is Friday 7 March 2003.

The Cambridge Environment and Transport Area Joint Committee will consider the consultation responses on Monday 7 April. It is likely that any measures approved then will be implemented this summer.

Clare Macrae

Date Venue Opening Times Staff available
Wednesday 29 January Cambridge Central Library, 12 noon-7 pm Throughout
Lion Yard
Thursday 30 January Cambridge Central Library, 9 am-7 pm 12 noon-2 pm
Lion Yard
Friday 31 January Cambridge Central Library, 9 am-4 pm 11 am-4 pm
Lion Yard
Monday 3 February Diamond Room, Selwyn College 12 noon-8 pm Throughout
(by Grange Road-Cranmer Road junction)
Tuesday 4 February Emmanuel United Reformed Church, 12 noon-8 pm Throughout
Trumpington Road

Campaign opinion

Though either option gives benefits for cyclists in Silver Street itself during the closure periods, the Cycling Campaign has serious concerns about the knock-on effects on cyclists elsewhere, especially on the inner ring road. The County Council has drawn back again from replacing the Fen Causeway-Trumpington Road-Lensfield Road mini-roundabouts with traffic signals. It now says it will review this six months after the Silver Street changes are installed. Also, despite repeated requests, nothing is included in the plans we have seen so far to help cyclists get out of Pembroke Street either crossing into Mill Lane or turning right towards King’s Parade and Silver Street. Crossing Mill Lane
Crossing into Mill Lane

So there is even less ‘jam today’ in this scheme than originally proposed, and it all relies on ‘jam tomorrow’, that just maybe one day the street will be closed completely, and maybe the mini-roundabouts will be replaced to reduce the cyclist casualty rate there. At the same time, traffic will increase on Newnham Road, Fen Causeway, Lensfield Road and Gonville Place, the last two especially well used by cyclists. It’s a tough call as to whether the change in Silver Street helps cyclists overall.