it’s just a bus route and a car park …

busway-protestAs we emerge from the summer break we start to see action all round: at the County Council, in the new Mayor’s office and with the recently renamed Greater Cambridge Partnership. It’s one of the first to show where transport schemes are concerned with the Joint Assembly meeting 13 Sep 17 in Shire Hall.

Click here for the agenda and papers.

Item 6 on the agenda is the ‘Cambourne to Cambridge Better Bus Journey Scheme’  and a recommendation to undertake further consultation on a number of options involving Park & Ride sites and bus routes.

The paper is disappointing but then much of what this body has done has been disappointing. Reading it you’d think that the only new transport link to be developed is Cambourne to Cambridge and the only technologies to be used are the motor car and the bus. There’s no mention of tram or light rail and the only mention of cycling relates to one P&R site which offers the best ‘park & cycle’ option.

What I’d like to have seen is an overview of how this might fit into a bigger picture. That would then lead into east-west rail (if that took a norther option then that would do the job?), St Neots (why are we fixated on Camborne to Cambridge, what about Cambourne to St Neots or even St Neots to Cambridge?) and the centre of Cambridge (exactly how are people supposed to get from Grange Road where all these bus routes seem to end to their end destinations?).

What I’d also like to see is a little less reliance of what seems to be a credo of it’s got to be buses. Just because we have a busway between St Ives and Cambridge and many people ride on it it doesn’t mean that that’s the right technology to use for any new mass/rapid transit routes. It wasn’t then and it isn’t now. Let’s remember about the need to worry about the £30 million we’re likely to have to fork out to repair what we’ve got today.

There’s an opportunity to listen to other stakeholders at an open meeting next week. We’ll see the Mayor sharing his ideas along with others who seem to have more imagination. Perhaps they will show us the route forward. The meeting is at Cambridge Rugby Club, Grantchester Road at 1930.

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