I helped a Cambridge resident put together a petition regarding the citi8 bus service. It got over 700 signatures and she presented it at last month’s council meeting.
The motion addressed the current situation whereby the citi8 bus service from Cottenham through Histon & Impington terminates at Drummer Street instead of continuing to the station and Addenbrookes. Stagecoach decided to do this because, it said, congestion in the city made it difficult for it to run a reliable bus service.
The motion asked the County Council to work with the Greater Cambridge Partnership to sort out the congestion so that through services could be resumed. And, rather reasonably, it asked that in the meantime signage at Drummer Street be improved so that bus transfers would be easier. Click here for more information about the petition.
Here’s the response to the petition from the Leader of the Council, Steve Count:
‘Further to your petition to Council on 20th March 2018, Cambridgeshire County Council continues to work as part of the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) to promote public and sustainable travel options across Cambridge. This is looking at improving the reliability and speed of bus journeys on a number of key routes into and around the city. For instance, public consultation has just finished on proposed public transport improvements along the A428 Madingley Road and just started on the Cambridge South East corridor (A1307). Proposals to improve public transport along Histon Road and Trumpington Road are due to be considered by the GCP Board in the near future.
The GCP is also seeking to bring forward work on what the wider public transport network needs to look like in Cambridge to support the continued successful development of the City. The work, contained within a wider review of city access proposals, will look at how the public transport network can be significantly enhanced to better meet the needs of residents, businesses and the wider Cambridge community. In addition, the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority is soon to commence a strategic review of bus services in the county to consider how things might be done differently in the future.
As the Citi8 and connecting buses to Addenbrooke’s are all commercial services operated by Stagecoach it is their responsibility to promote them, including any information about changing buses for onward journeys. The county council will, however, pass on your concerns about the lack of information in this area and work with them to see how the situation could be improved.’
That’s two paragraphs of waffle followed by one of passing the buck. The Drummer Street bus station together with the stops close by are managed by and the responsibility of the County Council. It’s indicative of the way that the Council is unable to understand what needs to be done to improve bus services that it doesn’t see the need to improve signage at the bus station which it operates.
There is of course a broader issue which is CCC’s relationship with Stagecoach. Operationally it’s fine but in terms of developing a partnership which responds to Cambridgeshire’s need for a more extensive, more reliable and more economical public transport system it’s just about non-existent.