On Tuesday the 25th of August I went to Horningsea Village Hall to look at the County Council’s plans for new cycle ways around Cambridge, which include proposals to improve the road between Fen Ditton and Horningsea for cyclists.
The County Council’s have a web page describing their plans. The major elements are:
- Widening the ramps on both sides of the bridge over the A14, giving more room for a cycle way.
- Buying a few meters of field, and putting a cycle way in the field between Horningsea and the A14.
- Allowing cycling on the footpath into the village.
- Work is to commence in November/December 2009 and take three months.
- Solar studs are to light the route where there are no street lights.
I think this is an excellent and badly needed project. I and the twenty or so people who were discussing the plans when I attended the exhibition were all of the opinion the the council ought get on with it.
The plans do not though include any work to improve the area at the Fen Ditton crossroads where I currently find the locations of the cycle paths confusing. The road is narrow here which creates problems for providing a cycleway. There is no plan to formally allow cycles on the path between Horningsea and Baits Bite Lock. I think that for encouraging recreational cycling it would be excellent if the footpath on the Horningsea side of the river to Fen Ditton and on into Cambridge was opened to cyclists. A number of obstructions have been removed from the path in recent years though. Another related improvement would be to make the bridal-way which runs on the Cambridge side of the A14 between Horningsea Road and the river more accessible to cyclists.
As part of the same set of improvements which are all funded by “cycle demonstration town” money there is a proposal to widen the path on New Bit from Trumpington Road towards Lammas Land. When I saw the city council’s tree officers last week I asked if there was anything which could be done to ensure the new path is not disrupted by tree roots. I wouldn’t want to see trees felled in the future because they were disrupting the path. There is a notice on the site saying the city council has asked the secretary of state for permission to carry out works on the common. I suspect at some point there will be a discussion as to what material the new path ought be made of. There is already resin bonded gravel and tarmac on the common so I don’t think it’s too critical.
Other works include:
- Harston to Trumpington – a fantastic scheme providing an alternative to crossing the busy M11 roundabout
- Babraham Park and Ride to Wandlebury
- Milton to Impington – a shared use foot/cycle path is to be built
A consultation is currently being run, responses can be made online via a form on the County Council’s website.
In respect of all schemes the consultation results are to be presented to County Council’s Cabinet on Tuesday, 29 September 2009, and to the South Cambridgeshire Traffic Area Joint Committee on Monday, 10 October 2009. Those two appear to me to have been arranged the wrong way round.
A further public consultation event is being held on Wednesday the 9th of September from 15.00 – 18.00 in Milton Community Centre.