Roundabout update

roundabout
Fendon Road roundabout

Most of the utility diversion work for the Fendon Road roundabout has now been completed and the contractors are working very hard to ensure they complete the works on time.

Here are the dates and times for the next series of drop-in sessions where you can chat with the County Council officers managing the project:

Thurs 30 Jan – 5.30 – 6.30pm

Thurs 27 Feb – 2.00 – 3.00pm… See more

The next station is … Addenbrooke’s!

Lib Dems with station sign
Campaigning for an Addenbrooke’s station in 1990

We believe a station on the Biomedical Campus would play a vital role in reducing car movements to the area, and consequently commuter and visitor parking.

A station at Addenbrooke’s to serve the hospital and the rest of the Biomedical Campus is badly needed and Liberal Democrats in Queen Edith’s and beyond have been campaigning for one to be built for many years, certainly before the days of websites and social media.

Like a long awaited delayed train, we welcome the ‘Cambridge South’ station that is now looking likely to appear some time during the next five years — funded by the Department of Transport, the Greater Cambridge Partnership and the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority plus local businesses such as Astra Zeneca.

PUBLIC CONSULTATION

Network Rail is running a public consultation on proposals for a new railway station and associated infrastructure.

There’s a series of consultation events to comment on the proposals and early designs.

The public consultation will begin next Wednesday, 20th January 2020 with events at various local venues including three in Queen Edith’s:

Monday 20th January 4pm-8pmThe University Centre (Hicks Room)
Granta Place, Cambridge, CB2 1RU
Tuesday 21st January5pm-9pmLong Road Sixth Form College
Long Road, Cambridge, CB2 8PX
Wednesday 22nd January 9am-1pmRoyal Papworth Hospital
Papworth Road, Cambridge Biomedical Campus, Cambridge, CB2 0AY
Thursday 23rd January4pm-8pmNetherhall School
Queen Edith’s Way, Cambridge, CB1 8NN
Friday 24th January 10am-2pmTrumpington Pavilion
King George V Playing Field, Paget Road, Trumpington, CB2 9JF
Saturday 25th January10am-2pmShelford Rugby Club
The Davey Field, Cambridge Road, Great Shelford, CB22 5JU
Tuesday 28th January3:30pm–7:30pmLittle Shelford Memorial Hall
The Long House, 11 Church Street, Little Shelford, CB22 5HG
Wednesday 29th January4pm-8pm Grantchester Village Hall
Vicarage Drive, Grantchester, Cambridge, CB3 9NG
Thursday 30th January1pm-5pmStapleford Jubilee Pavilion
Stapleford Recreation Ground, Off Haverhill Road, Stapleford, CB22 5BX

They also promise an online survey but the link isn’t available yet — I have asked for it but got a rather unhelpful auto-response. I’ll add the link here when I can.

Look forward to seeing some of you at the consultation events.

Fendon Road roundabout works

Fendon Road roundabout

The County Council are holding the first of a series of monthly drop-in sessions for the works to remodel the Fendon Road roundabout and construct pedestrian crossings. The first session will be between 2.00 and 3.00 this Thursday (26th September) in the Milton Room at St James’ Church on Wulfstan Way. Local residents are welcome to pop by to ask questions and discuss any issues related to the works.

Dates for the next Thursday afternoon drop-in sessions are as follows: 31 Oct; 28 Nov; 19 Dec; 30 Jan; 27 Feb; 26 Mar; 30 Apr.

This week’s session is 2-3 p.m., when many people are working, so I have asked if some of the later sessions can be at different times, to allow as many people as possible to visit.

We’d also like to invite you to join our Facebook group for discussing issues to do with the works. If you’re a local resident, or if you usually go through the roundabout on your regular trips, please join us at https://www.facebook.com/groups/1449587035195300/.

Residents’ parking

My review last year of the Morley residents’ parking review showed a need for some short-stay parking spaces near the library and school for daytime volunteers and visitors. I shared the feedback with parking officers and the Council has now advertised a Traffic Regulation Order for some Pay & Display bays, as well as a few new residents’ bays. To see the details and comment on the proposals, see https://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/residents/travel-roads-and-parking/roads-and-pathways/roadworks-and-faults/traffic-regulation-orders/. Comments are open until 12th September.

We know people in other areas want parking schemes, especially with the expansion of the  Biomedical Campus and have been pressing the Council to run consultations.

https://ccc-live.storage.googleapis.com/upload/www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/residents/travel-roads-and-parking/PR0566%20Public%20Notice.pdf?inline=true

Starting soon: zebra crossings and roundabout redesign

Amanda at Fendon Rd roundabout

Next month, work will begin on constructing pedestrian crossings and redesigning the roundabout joining Fendon Road, Mowbray Road and Queen Edith’s Way.

The County Council has scheduled works to start on 9th September. There will be three public exhibitions in the area to present the plans:

Exhibition events

  • Thursday 29 August 2019, 12.00pm to 2.00pm, Addenbrooke’s Concourse
  • Monday 2 September 2019, 5.30pm to 7.30pm, Netherhall School
  • Wednesday 4 September 2019, 3.30pm to 6.30pm, St James C of E Church, Wulfstan Way

There will be a chance to talk to the county council officers overseeing the project

Cherry Hinton Road

Cambridgeshire County Council is running a consultation on its proposals for changes to Cherry Hinton Road. Their aim is to make the road safer and more attractive for pedestrians (2000 a day) and cyclists (1500 a day).

The Council has arranged two drop-in events at Rock Road Library to display the plans and talk to residents. One took place on Tuesday and the next will be on Wednesday 5th June, 6-8pm. Last week’s session was busy, with about 50 people visiting, and a number of issues were raised.

A big concern was about what will happen to the bus stops on Cherry Hinton Road, as some of the existing stops don’t appear on the Council’s map. When questioned, the council officers explained that all bus stops are staying put, but the only ones they’ve marked are the ones that they want to convert to ‘floating bus stops’.

Floating bus stops themselves prompted questions too, about their suitability for this road and in some cases about their siting.

There are mixed views about the removal of the parking bays outside the shops, as although the parked cars reduce the width of the road, the parking bays are used by people visiting the café, the shops and the bank.

Questions were asked about the different categories of cycle lane: mandatory (solid white line) and advisory (dashed white line). The advisory ones are not as good for cyclists, but the road is not wide enough for mandatory lanes along its full length — and there are concerns about whether the narrower carriageway will be wide enough for buses.

Shops and woman

Cherry Hinton Road

It’s important to get this right as there are many different types of users and journeys on Cherry Hinton Road: trips to shops, schools, places of work, doctors and chemists, community and leisure facilities, so please visit if you can to have a look.

Tories’ Shire Hall gamble

Liberal Democrats at Shire Hall presenting a petition

Following a meeting behind closed doors on Tuesday, Cambridgeshire County Council has announced Brookgate as its preferred bidder for the council’s Shire Hall site in Cambridge.

The decision was taken in confidential session, although I and the other Liberal Democrat councillors voted against the exclusion of the press and public — ‘clearing the public gallery’ as the administration crassly put it.

Brookgate, the company that has developed the CB1 development of Cambridge station, will lease the Shire Hall site for a period still to be agreed. The company proposes to establish a hotel and office accommodation there, while the County Council moves its HQ to Alconbury, Huntingdonshire, 25 miles away from Cambridge.

Liberal Democrat group leader Cllr Lucy Nethsingha speaks for us all today, saying: “The Liberal Democrat group have very grave concerns about the decision taken this week on the future of the Shire Hall site.

“We have opposed the move to Alconbury, on the basis that there are too many levels of government in Cambridgeshire, and the Conservatives should not be building an expensive new headquarters at a time when we should be reducing the number of councils and moving to a unitary structure.

“We are also deeply worried by the lease mechanism which has been pushed through the council by the Conservatives against cross-party opposition.

“The proposed lease arrangement leaves the council with a high level of future risk.

“The expectations of income over the next 30 years depend on complex calculations of inflation and rental income. This income is far from certain.  Yet again it seems Conservatives are pushing risk and cost onto future generations.” 

Pavement parking

Pavement: for pedestrians. That’s whom they are intended for.

Yet only too often, pedestrians can’t walk on the pavement safely because it’s blocked by parked cars. Not only does that mean people have to squeeze past cars and risk the doors opening in front of them, or walk in the road, but the cars are too heavy for the pavement, meaning they break and crack.

Parked vehicles on the pavement is a pain for all pedestrians, but most of all for anyone with a disability. For folk in wheelchairs because wheelchairs need the pavement width, and for blind and visually impaired people because they can’t see a car on the pavement and it is perilous for them to walk in the road. Young children in prams and pushchairs are also at risk when their parents have to push them in the road because the pavement is blocked.

Dorset MP Simon Hoare tabled a Private Members’ Bill in the House of Commons to ban pavement parking in 2015 but was persuaded to withdraw it when the Government promised to review the law and look at the options for changing it.

The review has been a long time coming but this week the Government’s Transport Committee has launched an inquiry. They are calling for evidence in three areas:

  • the impact of pavement parking;
  • the enforcement of pavement parking offences; and 
  • enforcement and, if necessary, reform of traffic regulation orders need to deal with pavement parking.

The closing date to submit written evidence is 14 May 2019.

You can comment on line at https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/transport-committee/inquiries/parliament-2017/pavement-parking-17-19/.

Alternatively, I shall be sending in a representation myself on behalf of the many emails and phone calls I have received about pavement parking and how it affects them.

government inquiry

South Area: policing, transport projects and grants

Next Monday’s South Area meeting will be at the Cherry Hinton Village Centre, starting at 7pm.

The agenda is a full one with some new presentations as well as the regular items. Highlights are the police report, a presentation on new transport projects from the County Cycling Team — including new pedestrian crossings and changes to the roundabout linking Mowbray Road, Fendon Road and Queen Edith’s Way —  and decisions on grants for a wide range of local organizations. Here is the full agenda.

Save The Haven!

People outside building

Conservative-run Cambridgeshire County Council is planning to close The Haven, a supported living scheme in Wulfstan Way.

The Haven was purpose-built – only 13 years ago – for older people with mental health problems, but now the County Council is saying it’s not up to standard and must close.

The scheme comprises eight flats as well as communal rooms, a garden, a manager’s office and a bedroom for staff on night duty.

Residents moved to The Haven with the promise that they would not have to move again. They take part in a recovery programme there enabling them to develop confidence and become members of the community — both the ‘family’ at The Haven and also the local Queen Edith’s community.

If this very successful unit closes, the upheaval will have a profound impact on the lives and mental states of these vulnerable residents, who will take a long time to adjust and to learn to trust again. And the dedicated and experienced staff there will lose their jobs.

The local churches and other members of the community are running a petition to the County Council asking them to reconsider. I and your other Lib Dem councillors are supporting this and invite you to sign the petition at bit.ly/the_haven. This will be presented to the Conservative councillor responsible for adult care provision and her committee.

If you prefer to sign a paper form, download one here, or sign at St James’s Church, the Queen Edith Chapel, or St John’s Church. We would welcome any other local places that can display the petition.

The Haven – letter – CCC