Proposals revealed for two new Cambridgeshire public transport routes similar to busways

Proposals that could see over GBP100 million worth of transport investment, including two routes akin to busways, will be presented to Cambridge residents for consultation. The Greater Cambridge Partnership's (GCP) executive board voted unanimously on Thursday (October 1) to proceed to public consultations for two substantial projects later this autumn, having received support from early stakeholder engagement. Proposals for two different transport corridors will be put to a formal public consultation, including a northern route connecting Cambridge and Waterbeach, and another route out of the city to the east.

The options for both areas include proposals for a purpose-built off-road transport route akin to a busway, which is envisioned as forming part of the Cambridgeshire Autonomous Metro. The GCP has indicated these dedicated public transport routes would use different technology to the current guided busway system, and will possibly include adjacent routes for walking, cycling and horse riding.

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'I look forward to seeing what people think'

The plans for the east of the city are intended to offer better transport links for the new developments proposed in the area, including the Marleigh Development, and anticipate the potential use of the airport site to build homes in the future. The plans for the east of the city are proposed in two phases, the first would see investment in Newmarket Road to "address existing problems and issues relating to committed development".

The second phase and longer-term strategy being considered is for a dedicated public transport route, akin to a busway, which would form part of the planned Cambridgeshire Autonomous Metro. Relocating and enlarging the Newmarket Road park and ride is also to be considered. The potential Waterbeach to Cambridge route is also envisioned as forming part of a future metro system, and is also intended to improve routes for walking, cycling and horse riding.

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Greenway funding approved

The executive board also approved on Thursday proposals for five new "greenway routes," which are intended to connect villages in South Cambridgeshire to the city for walking, cycling and horse riding. The board approved GBP1.25 million for the development of detailed design work, and GBP31 million as an "outline budget" for the five routes. The five greenway routes are:

- Barton Greenway GBP10million - Bottisham Greenway GBP5million - Horningsea Greenway GBP2.5million

- Sawston Greenway GBP9million - Swaffhams Greenway GBP4.5million The GCP has already agreed six other greenways with the Haslingfield route due before the board for a decision in December.

Chairman of the GCP's executive board, Roger Hickford, said: "The A10 and A1134 routes suffer from significant congestion, with thousands of new homes and jobs planned in the area, so it is vital we invest in better public transport and walking and cycling routes now to help people travel around quickly and safely without relying on a car, so we can cut congestion and improve air quality.

"I look forward to seeing what people think about our plans in the public consultations that will launch later this autumn."

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