Addenbrooke’s Access Road

This article was published in 2006, in Newsletter 65.

When you read this the time for comments and objections about the planning application for this new road will have passed.

Given the major developments in this area, with over three thousand houses and major expansion on the Addenbrooke’s site all within 10-15 years, it is perhaps inevitable that this road will be constructed. There are assurances that this will not become a through road, and both a ‘shared use’ path on the north side and on-road 1.5 m cycle lanes on both sides are proposed. We hope our earlier input has helped the cycle provision, as at one stage it was suggested that on-road lanes were unnecessary.

Unfortunately there still seem to be major failings in facilities for walkers and cyclists, both ‘on-road’ and ‘off-road’, and it seems that some people could benefit from reading the Government document Planning Policy Guidance on Transport (PPG13), especially where it talks about ‘permeability’ in new developments for sustainable modes. We would expect matters of detailed road design to be considered by an Area Joint Traffic Management Committee, but we shall object in the planning application in case this proves to be our only forum. On accessibility to and permeability of this area this will be our only chance for decades to get changes that could improve the area.

Our main objections will be

  • All this road should have a 30 mph limit
  • The junctions with Shelford Road and the A1309 must be much more cycle friendly than those shown on the plans
  • The small roundabouts must not have ‘straight-through’ paths which encourage higher speeds (arms at 120°)
  • The road must not form a barrier for sustainable access on foot or by bike to the informal recreation areas to the south.
  • Additional short cycle links must be included to enable cyclists to join the eventual route of Sustrans NCN 11 just east of the railway without a long diversion via a roundabout or crossing the road.
  • Similar links must be provided just west of the railway to improve access to informal recreation areas.

The large number of major planning applications at present is overwhelming the Campaign’s ability to read, digest, comment and object. We hope that the not unlimited time we can devote to such applications will result in improvements for the benefit of future generations of cyclists.

Jim Chisholm