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The Cambourne to Cambridge (C2C) Better Public Transport Project is one of four corridor schemes that form a key part of the Greater Cambridge Partnership’s (GCP) sustainable transport programme. Through the City Deal, the GCP is delivering a comprehensive programme of sustainable transport projects, working with local authority partners to create a world-class transport network that can meet the needs of the area now and into the future. In May 2020, a Government ‘Gateway review’ hailed the ‘significant success and progress’ the GCP has made since 2015 on ambitious plans ranging from city cycleways to better public transport routes to transform travel for thousands of people
May 2022 - Environmental Impact Assessment Consultation
Launching on Monday 16 May, and running until 11 July, this is the fourth public consultation on proposals to best manage and mitigate the scheme’s impacts as part of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).
An EIA is required as part of a portfolio of evidence submitted to the Department for Transport in the application to build a scheme. It includes information from surveys looking at ecology, landscape, and cultural heritage, along with feedback from stakeholders - all of which will be published online.
Visit our consultation webpage for more information - www.greatercambridge.org.uk/c2c-eia
July 2021 - Audit report discussed at GCP Executive Board
The GCP Executive Board agreed in December 2020 to undertake an independent audit review of the C2C scheme. The results of the audit were discussed by the GCP Executive Board at its meeting on 1 July 2021. At that meeting the Executive Board approved the Outline Business Case and asked the project team to go ahead with the next stage of the application process: to undertake a full Environmental Impact Assessment.
July 2021 - Independent Audit report
The independent audit review was led by Phil Swann and was published in May 2021. Mr Swann is a director of Shared Intelligence and was previously a director of the Tavistock Institute and Director of Strategy and Communications at the Local Government Association. It is the second independent audit to acknowledge a robust appraisal process following one undertaken by Arup for the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority (CPCA) in 2018. The audit states that the project has 'included extensive consultations with stakeholders and affected parties. The preferred option has taken these views into account and proposed mitigation measures where negative impacts are identified.'
The audit notes that C2C complements East-West Rail Oxford to Cambridge rail link and flags new opportunities to reflect the current Mayor’s priorities and the Government’s Bus Back Better strategy. It also recognises that housing developments in Cambourne West and Bourn Airfield require the C2C project to be opened by 2025 to provide reliable public transport services, otherwise that planned growth will be put at risk.
The conclusion of the audit is that there is no reason why the Executive Board of the GCP should not proceed to the next stage in the development of the C2C scheme.
December 2020 - Outline Business Case
The GCP Executive Board discussed the Outline Business Case for the scheme at their meeting on 10 December, and agreed to note the preferred route and Scotland Farm travel hub location and agreed to undertake an Independent Audit Review of the scheme, to report to the Board in July 2021.
June 2019 – Phase 2 consultation findings released.
- 48% respondents indicated an off-road option as their preferred choice for the link between Madingley Mulch roundabout and Bourn Airfield
- 20% respondents indicated their support for an on-road option that would feature public transport priority lanes
- 19% respondents indicated their support for an on-road option that would feature junction improvements
For the travel hub site options, 63% of respondents indicated they preferred the Scotland Farm site compared with 17% supporting the Waterworks site.
Parts of the current Cambourne to Cambridge road network, in particular the A1303/Madingley Road, suffer heavy traffic congestion at peak times. Without action, by 2031 car trips into the city are set to increase by up to 70%, with already lengthy journey times expected to double.
A new route, bypassing other road traffic, will provide a public transport alternative to avoid congestion and make quicker journeys, with provision for walking and cycling.
The dedicated route will create reliable transport links, running regular, ‘turn up and go’ services operating to high service standards.
SUSTAINABLE TRAVEL CHOICES
Traffic congestion is damaging to the environment, public health and local economy. The Cambourne to Cambridge route will create sustainable travel choices, be served by modern public transport vehicles, designed to limit emissions and pollution, with additional walking and cycling provision.
Local Plans for Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Local Plan propose new housing in towns and villages to the west of the city. Between 2011 and 2031, there are a planned additional 8,000 new homes set for development in the Cambourne to Cambridge area and 44,000 new jobs to be created in or around the city.
A new transport link running regular, quality services will provide a vital connection for growing communities to access jobs, services and other opportunities
GCP’s sustainable corridor schemes are complemented by travel hubs to encourage park and ride journeys and end-to-end walking, cycling and horse riding to create a continuous link to the city from growing villages and towns and to create additional capacity for growing numbers of cyclists.
The schemes are intended to be served by modern, electric public transport vehicles to limit air pollution and noise and to be adaptable over time to developing transport technology in future vehicles.
There is a commitment to deliver a minimum of 10% biodiversity net gain for the scheme overall, with the objective of achieving 20% gain. Project officers continue to work with local communities to limit and mitigate environmental impacts, wherever possible. Wherever possible trees and shrubs will be retained and replanted and mitigation measures such as planting flower measures can be considered to enhance biodiversity.
Once the preferred scheme is agreed by the Executive Board, the project would progress to undertake a full Environmental Impact Assessment, Transport Assessment, and Road Safety Audit with further opportunities to engage in consultation.
A significant number of environmental surveys and assessments have been undertaken and are available on the Cambourne to Cambridge project background page, covering wildlife habitats along the route for animals including reptiles, bats, breeding and wintering birds, badgers, barn owls, reptiles, water voles and invertebrates and initial air quality assessments.
PLANNING THE ROUTE
The route is made up of three key elements:
- A public transport route between Cambourne and Cambridge, providing reliable and sustainable services bypassing general traffic congestion.
- A new travel hub site off the A428/A1303.
- New cycling and walking facilities.