Let local councillors know what you think about the proposed A10 cycle and footpath.

Write to: Paul Bearpark (cllr.bearpark@scambs.gov.uk) Anna Bradnam (cllr.bradnam@scambs.gov.uk) Judith Rippeth (cllr.rippeth@scambs.gov.uk)

The reference is Planning application S/0559/17/COND29

Here are some points you may wish to include along with any personal experience of the pathway.

Points about the planning condition

Condition 29 of planning permission S/0559/17/OL requires the approval of South Cambs District Council and that approval shouldn’t have been given for a sub-standard pedestrian and cycle path.

Request the Councillors halt the process and revisit the plans with Urban and Civic to find a solution that provides for the expected number of users and protects safety.

No homes can be occupied until the Council has approved plans for the improved cycle and pedestrian path along the A10. Therefore the power balance lies with the Council.

The 2018 Local Plan says the New Town will have “attractive, direct, safe and convenient walking and cycling routes” and “segregated high quality pedestrian and cycle links”. [SS/6 part 11]

The S106 agreement (that includes the condition about the pathway) was signed in September 2019. There’s been plenty of time to do this properly. Local groups have made many constructive suggestions eg Waterbeach Cycling ‘People First’ vision from October 2018.

It may take longer to achieve a safe and attractive pathway but it is now or never.

Points about the A10 pathway

The existing shared use footpath and cycle path is dangerous because it is directly adjacent to the A10 (no separation), narrow and there is a high level of fast moving traffic on the road.

There is a risk in the dark when oncoming lights of vehicles make it difficult to identify the edge of the path. It is hazardous for northbound cyclists trying to pass southbound cyclists.

The path upgrade as proposed is awful, going from 3.5m in places to 1.3m, it is a cheap job that owing to the increase in population in the next few years, is an accident waiting to happen.

There have already been a number of tragic accidents on this stretch.

It will not meet the objectives to enable and encourage 28,000 residents of Waterbeach New Town to access Cambridge and beyond by non-motorised means.

This path is different from the greenway, towpath or Mere Way. It is a transport corridor, it is the most direct route, it should be safe. It isn’t.

Points about the planning approval process

Waterbeach Parish Council objected to earlier plans and weren’t asked to comment on the latest.

There was no public consultation on the revised plans eg Milton Cycling Campaign only found out about it by repeatedly checking the planning portal.

LTN1/20 is the Department of Transport’s guidance on designing high-quality, safe cycle infrastructure. This was released in July 2020 ie after the S106 agreement was concluded. Given that the design of the pathway came afterwards, it’s a reasonable expectation that the path should meet the minimum standards of LTN1/20; it doesn’t.

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