Tackling peak-time congestion

Update July 2017: The Greater Cambridge Partnership (aka City Deal) dropped proposals for peak-time congestion control points (virtual bollards), but is progressing plans for a tax on workplace parking spaces, and extension of residents parking zones. New proposals and further consultation is expected to be announced in advance of the Board meeting on 26 July.

Peak-time congestion control points

New virtual bollards or bus gates (similar to the ones on Regent St, Bridge St, Silver St and Emmanuel Rd) are proposed for various locations in the city, including on Hills Road and Mill Road. These would permit only buses, cycles and hackney carriage taxis to pass during the morning and evening peaks. The exact locations and hours of operation are not yet determined.

Indicative locations of proposed peak-time congestion control points
Indicative locations of proposed peak-time congestion control points

The deadline for submitting a response to the consultation was 10 October 2016, though you can still write to the City Deal with questions or comments: city.deal@cambridgeshire.gov.uk

Find out more Background documents

Representation by SoPRA to the City Deal

There is general agreement amongst residents with the broad objectives of the plan to reduce congestion in order to allow buses to run more reliably. However many residents feel strongly that the proposed Peak-Time Control Points will have an unacceptably detrimental impact on their quality of life and the viability of local businesses. It is most probable that an overwhelming majority would vote against their introduction. But, given that a decision has already been made to introduce them, we would like to influence where and how the control points are introduced and operated. That is what this response is focused on.


We would like to thank officers and councillors for taking the time at exhibitions to patiently answer residents’ questions about the 8 Point Plan.

Some people who attended those exhibitions, in particular the one at St Paul’s, found it difficult to work out who was there in an official capacity because they were not all wearing clearly identifiable name badges. Some of the ‘officials’, including from Mott MacDonald, showed little knowledge or understanding of the local impacts of the PCCPs, and were unable to answer people’s questions.

Our residents’ association committee were happy to distribute leaflets door to door throughout South Petersfield. However, residents and businesses in many other areas of the city and, just as importantly, in necklace villages and beyond, did not receive individual notifications of the plans or consultations. I am sure that many people are still unaware of what is planned.

The consultation has given people a range of impressions of what is planned with the PCCPs, with officers and councillors offering contradictory interpretations of how much scope there is for changing the plans; what locations are under consideration; what hours they might operate; whether they will operate tidally; and who might be eligible for exemptions.

Many people have commented about the poor quality of the questionnaire, with leading questions and inadequate prompting on the negative impacts. In fact the entire exercise appears to be more like a sales promotion than an honest engagement around the pros and cons of the proposals.

The leaflet does not make clear that the planned congestion reduction proposals go hand-in-hand with new bus lanes on radial routes. Very few people will have read paragraph 63 of the Access & Capacity Report, which makes this clear. Describing bus lanes/ways as ‘public transport schemes’ with no further explanation or references is misleading and disingenuous.


Many residents now believe that they will have an automatic exemption to drive through control points. How they came to that conclusion is easy to see from this sentence in the leaflet: “It is important to underline that all properties and businesses along a road with a PCCP would still be accessible at all times – including during peak-hours.”

Some officers and councillors have stated categorically that residents and businesses close to PCCPs will be eligible for an exemption (though ‘close’ has not been defined). This is a promise that residents and local businesses expect to be kept!

It has been suggested that granting so many exemptions will put the scheme outside the Civil Enforcement powers of the County Council, and therefore enforceable only by the police, who are unlikely to make this a priority.

Cllr Herbert indicated that residents would be able to appeal Penalty Charge Notices for exceptional circumstances. This will be inconvenient and, for some people, stressful. As there are likely to be a large number of such claims, has the administrative burden on the County Council been costed?

People with disabilities

The Access & Capacity Report indicates that “Disabled drivers would not be exempt” from control point access restrictions. This should have been mentioned in the consultation, as many people assume that , say, Blue Badge holders would receive an automatic exemption as they do not have the option to walk, cycle or take a bus.

Many residents are concerned that people with limited mobility (e.g. because of a heart condition), but who do not qualify for a Blue Badge, will not be eligible for an exemption. Residents are also concerned that it will be difficult for them to assist infirm relatives and friends, e.g. to give them a lift to a doctor or hospital appointment.

Health and social care

There are serious concerns that health and social care workers will not be able to attend their charges in a timely manner: administering medication, helping with toileting and getting out of bed are all time-critical. It is not possible to reschedule visits to avoid traffic peaks without severely impacting the lives of vulnerable adults and children. Also care staff are generally not paid for the time it takes to drive between homes, so long detours will reduce their earnings, which are already barely above the minimum wage.

Private hire vehicles

The Access & Capacity Report states, “The current Cambridge core traffic scheme allows private hire cars access through the existing closure points; however it is considered that this may not be appropriate for these closures.” Most of the public are not aware of the distinction between hackney and private hire taxis, nor of the reasoning for excluding private hire taxis. It must be remembered that some residents with limited mobility depend on private hire taxis, and would be penalised financially if those had to follow long detours. There will need to be clarity about which taxi companies are permitted to pass through control points.

Working mothers

Many people have expressed the view that the PCCP proposals discriminate against working mothers. The practical issues clearly apply to parents of either gender, but in most cases it is women who assume the responsibility of delivering and collecting young children from school (and pre- and after-school activities, often laden with sports bags, musical instruments, etc.) Combining this with getting to and from work in a short space of time by bike or bus is not a practical option for most of them.


It is clear that parents driving their children to school (primary and private schools in particular) generates a significant amount of traffic and congestion. The City Deal appears not to have any plans to tackle this, and is expecting parents to change their behaviour without any assistance.

Driving to work

Many residents work outside the city (often one partner works in the city, another outside). For them public transport is rarely an option (a situation that is unlikely to change) and they would resent having to leave home very much earlier, or drive several extra miles, on possibly highly congested roads, to get to work. This argues for making control points on radial roads tidal.

Home services & deliveries

It is unclear what the effect of PCCPs will be on:

  • Post Office and other courier collections and deliveries (especially deliveries with a guaranteed delivery time before 10am).
  • Builders, who typically start work on site between 8am and 9am.
  • Maintenance service providers, e.g. attending plumbing emergencies.

Other practical considerations

People unfamiliar with the city will struggle to understand what route they need to take. Sat navs do not generally ‘know’ about time-limited access restrictions. It will be well-nigh impossible to communicate sufficient information on road-side signage to guide people to all destinations.

People arriving at a PCCP slightly later than anticipated but after the switch-on time, perhaps because of a hold-up en route, will be faced with having to take a Penalty Charge Notice or change their route at the last minute, possibly entailing a detour of several miles.

People reaching a PCCP unexpectedly will need to be able to turn around, including lorries and coaches. In many cases the only available ‘escape route’ will be via narrow residential streets.

Rat run: Tenison Rd

Figure 4.9 in the Short List Report, showing “Option 6 with mode shift – Demand flow difference from DM” indicates that Tenison Rd will receive a >50% increase in northbound traffic. That is extremely alarming for residents of that road, who fear a marked reduction in quality of life, in particular additional noise disturbance and pollution.

Tenison Rd is having nearly £500,000 of Section 106 money spent on it to calm the traffic to mitigate the increase in volume resulting from the CB1 development and increased footfall at the train station. This was in recognition of the fact that Tenison Rd (and, to a lesser extent, St Barnabas and Devonshire Rds) will already be carrying too much through traffic for non-arterial residential roads.

Tenison Rd is heavily used by people walking and cycling to and from the station. Adding a large volume of traffic will reduce safety and increase pollution.

Impassable crossings

The crossings at the junctions between Tenison Rd and the Northern Access Road and Station Road are uncontrolled. Local residents, workers and commuters already expect that these will present a serious obstacle for pedestrians, especially those with disabilities or young children, and a hazard for people on cycles. (These issues have been raised with Ian Dyer and the safety team.) Add significantly more through these junctions and they will be practically impassable for pedestrians at peak times (except of course when the road logjams).

Potential rat run: Tenison Ave–Lyndewode Rd

If the control point on Hills Road is set between Station Rd and Harvey Rd, Tenison Avenue and Lyndewode Rd will be used as a rat run. This appears not to have been picked up on the CSRM, presumably because the cell resolution is still too coarse.

Options we have discussed, but which would need detailed analysis and close consultation are:

  • Adding a control point (possibly tidal) on Tenison Rd between Gt Northern Rd and Tenison Avenue. This would have major implications for residents and local businesses.
  • Adding a control point or closing Tenison Avenue to through traffic.

Travis Perkins

The builders yard at the Mill Road end of Devonshire Road receives a stream of HGVs and builders’ vans, many of them during the morning peak. Having a control point on Mill Road bridge means that all traffic to Travis Perkins will have to travel up and down Devonshire Road (there is a right-turn ban from Mill Road into Devonshire Road – for good safety reasons). Has Travis Perkins been actively consulted on the proposals?

Travis Perkins is also likely to redevelop the site in 2017/18 in accordance with the planning consent granted on 8 April 2014 (11/1294/FUL, 11/1295/FUL). This will draw a large number of construction vehicles into Devonshire Rd during the morning peak.

Other potential rat runs

If the control point on Hills Rd is set beyond Bateman St, then Bateman St and other streets in New Town will become even more heavily used rat runs. Similar sorts of concerns will be raised around Coleridge Rd, Radegund Rd, Madingley and Coton villages, and no doubt other streets that the traffic model hasn’t picked up. How will these potential rat runs be addressed?

Newmarket Road

The modelling indicates that a large portion of traffic will be displaced onto other roads. Newmarket Rd in particular stands out as it is a major bus route. It does not seem to be a good strategy to improve the reliability of some services at the expense of others.

Park & Ride

Many residents have asked why the County Council does not reverse the imposition of a £1 charge for parking at the Park & Ride. The ~15% sustained reduction in use of P&R has undoubtedly led to a significant and sustained increase in traffic into the city, congestion at peak times, and residential streets jammed with commuters’ cars.

Congestion charging

Many residents have asked why the City Deal has not consulted on a congestion charge, believing it to be a more satisfactory way to reduce congestion.


Residents support the underlying objective of reducing congestion in the city centre, and accept that behaviour change is necessary to achieve this. However there is very little support for PCCPs in the locations proposed. There is concern that the side-effects will be highly detrimental to residents’ quality of life and to the viability of local businesses. The plans offer no improvements to city bus services, nor assistance with getting children to and from school.

We therefore ask the City Deal to:

  1.  Conduct an equality impact assessment of the planned measures on those people and businesses that have no reasonable alternative to driving when the PCCPs are active.
  2.  Clarify who will be eligible for exemptions.
  3.  Examine in more detail what the impacts of PCCPs will be on traffic flows between Hills Road and Mill Road.
  4.  Incentivise commuters to use P&R (or regular bus services).
  5.  Commission research into how parents may be assisted in taking their children to and from school safely without needing to drive.

We also ask the City Deal to review and model the following variations and alternatives:

  1. Operate PCCPs in the morning only. If City Deal measures are effective at inducing modal shift to buses and bikes, there will be fewer people driving out of the city in the evening.
  2. Operate PCCPs on radial roads (Mill Rd, Hills Rd) tidally (so that residents can exit the city in the morning, and enter in the evening).
  3. Test the Mill Road PCCP at one of three locations:
    • On the railway bridge
    • By the swimming pool
    • East of Coleridge Road
  4. Test the Hills Rd PCCP at one of two locations:
    • Between Station Rd and Bateman St, with additional control(s) to block rat-running via Tenison Ave.
    • Between Harvey Rd and Gonville Pl, with additional controls to block rat-running in New Town.
  5. Consult on adding a PCCP on Tenison Rd at the Gt Northern Way junction, and any other measures that would reduce through traffic in the area.
  6. Instead of PCCPs on Mill Rd and Hills Rd, have control points at the Trumpington St end of Lensfield Rd and Bateman St. Combined with the East Rd PCCP, this would be effective at reducing traffic on Hills Rd and Mill Rd, as these would no longer be through routes to other parts of the city. This is illustrated at: http://www.smartertransport.uk/buses/#map4
  7. Instead of using PCCPs, make the inner ring road one-way with a contraflow bus lane. This is illustrated at: http://www.smartertransport.uk/buses/#map3
  8. Develop an equitable road pricing scheme.

Response from City Deal to SoPRA’s initial representation


Thank you very much for offering to distribute copies of our information leaflet to residents in your area, we would be happy to provide you with 1,000 copies as requested. [We will arrange collection.] We will also be offering leaflets to other residents associations and community groups, through FeCRA, to distribute around Cambridgeshire.

People with disabilities

We acknowledge that the Access & Capacity Report does indicate that “Disabled drivers would not be exempt” from control point access restrictions. Although this is the current proposal, we welcome the views from respondents on this proposition. We will be investigating detailed exemptions once we have these views, after the engagement period.

Health and Social Care

You raise some important concerns, which we are well aware of. Delivering care to people is really important for the County Council so we will be working with colleagues across the Council and with their providers to ensure that we are able to maintain this vital service.

Private Hire Vehicles

We acknowledge that not everyone will be aware of the distinction between hackney and private hire taxis. This is an area where more work is needed and discussions with stakeholders and operators will be essential to develop our plans as we move forward.

Potential rat runs and impassable crossings

We acknowledge that we need to work with residents, employers and stakeholders to consider the detailed implications of the proposed PCCPs, particularly with regard to potential rat runs. Over the coming months we will be undertaking more detailed modelling to test the impacts of the PCCPs and refine the proposals to minimise rat runs and develop any supporting measures that may be required. We will work with local communities to develop any necessary mitigation measures to address these issues. And will also develop complementary proposals for reallocating road space to pedestrians and cyclists.

Bus lanes

There has been no intention to mislead people about the links between these proposals and those for bus and cycle improvements on the radial routes. We are producing some more maps for the exhibitions boards which will help to show the links between the different schemes and will put these on our website when ready.

26 thoughts on “Tackling peak-time congestion”

  1. Michael Potts

    Re: Rat run: Tenison Rd

    This cannot be allowed. The council, both city and town have steadfastly refused to listen to the residents feelings and demands and is like a dictatorship. The taxi situation will get far worse and so a rethink is required to route then down station road and out onto hills road……i will hold you responsible for any injury or death caused by the increased traffic flow, also damage to parked cars.

    1. Caroline McGinnis

      I have lived in Tenison Road for 20 years and until a couple of years ago it was a pleasure. It no longer is. The upheaval of the road calming works has been noisy and dirty but it will end. If this scheme goes through we will become even more of a rat run making conditions unbearable. More dirt, noise, pollution, angry motors etc. A serious impact on my quality of life.

  2. As a residential rather than arterial or even distributory road, Tenison Road is already over-used by taxis and private cars. It’s difficult to see how it can be adapted for this kind of traffic, set to increase.

    I support the overall strategy of prioritising buses.

  3. Caroline Murray

    The Tenison Avenue/Lyndewode Road/Glisson Road route has always been a rat-run to gain access from Tenison Road to Hills Road avoiding the Station Road and War Memorial Junctions. Since the closure of Tenison Road, the volume of cars along this route and in the reverse direction has increased massively, exactly as predicted by local residents. It’s difficult to imagine how much worse this will get when the end of Station Road is closed to traffic, let alone having timed closures on Tenison Road. Previous experience of County Council traffic officers suggests that they have no understanding whatever of the existing traffic flows in this residential area, and are not interested in what actually happens day-to-day.

  4. These outrageous proposals will trap me in my house during peak periods and seriously impact my quality of life

    1. Robin Moseley

      I share the concern expressed by Mr Anthony Coad. I live at St Barnabas Court (sited between Hills Road and Mill Road) and will be trapped with no access to Cambridge within peak hours. I am a doctor at Addenbrookes Hospital. How am I supposed to get there during peak times? I also share concerns for people running small businesses who happen to live between Hills Road and Mill Road. This is going to damage them. Labour already has a reputation for being anti-small business. This will simply support that reputation.

      1. Frank Gawthrop

        To be fair to ‘Labour’ this is their policy but it also shared with Conservative controlled South Cambs District Council and by the Conservative group on Cambridgeshire County Council (which is a Council where no party has no overall control.) The so called ‘City Deal’ is a three way body charged by government with spending a £100m grant in the next four years and as such is cross party. I am not sure of the policy of the minority LibDems on South Cambs or the County but in the City they favour a congestion charge as do the Green Party.

  5. Rat run……attended the first meeting……what a waste of time effort and money. Not addressing the issue. It will force traffic into the side roads and cause log jams. We should be restricting people coming into the city, not causing problems for those that live in the city areas.
    You don’t listen to all the objections. I did not find one person attending out of all those at St. Paul’s who were in favour. Nobody was interested in the residents. They will be when we block the roads…..

  6. it is not just bateman street st that may become a north new town rat run, undoutedly panton st and brookside, and pemberton terrace and union road WILL become rat runs from the extra traffic on Trumpington road – unless all through routes in north newtown are cut and made into return loops only.
    i support ending of all pay and display parking in north newtown.

  7. The central arterial road closures will cause significant rat-running through the South Petersfield area.

    All car journeys to the Train Station via Lensfield Road will be diverted along Tenison Avenue.

    It is my understanding that residents will be allowed to travel through control points during peak hours where they need to do so for access. If peak-time access is in question, we should certainly advocated for it.

    Assuming the above, it is important we either advocate for the Hills Road control point to be placed between Station Road and Brooklands Ave junctions. If this is not possible and additional control point will be needed on Tenison Road between the Tenison Ave and Great Northern junctions.

    1. Council officers have made clear that there will no general exemptions for residents (nor for that matter, Blue Badge holders or businesses). There has been a suggestion that some control points (e.g. on Hills Rd and Mill Rd) could be ‘tidal’, allowing residents to leave the city in the morning peak, and return in the evening peak.

      Going through a control point when operational would incur a £60 fine, reduced to £30 if paid within 14 days, or increased to £90 if unpaid after 28 days.

    2. “understanding that residents will be allowed to travel through control points during peak hours where they need to do so for access. ” Could you advise were this has been suggested and if it has ever actually been confirmed. I might ask how residents cars will pass through the type of bollards we are now advised are to be used?

      1. It has been suggested by some councillors, including Lewis Herbert, who chairs the City Deal, that residents and businesses most affected by a control point would be granted an exemption to pass through it. In my opinion this is unlikely to be feasible: thousands of people will claim exemptions on a whole range of grounds; whatever criteria are used to determine eligibility will be challenged. Council officers therefore want to impose something simple and enforceable. I don’t think that can be reconciled with councillors’ desire to appease voters. But we’ll have to wait and see until the consultation report and recommendations are published in, I think, January.

  8. Firstly, I have to ask why any traffic control measures are considered necessary above what is already in place?

    I’ve lived in the Mill Rd area for 10 years and, from what I can see with my own eyes, there is not really a problem with congestion anywhere in Cambridge. Certainly no worse or unbearable than any other major centre in the UK that has inherently narrow roads.

    If anything, the biggest problem is speeding. The council’s 20mph limit is frankly a joke as it is not enforced and is routinely ignored by the majority of drivers. It has been nothing but a waste of money installing the 20mph scheme. I watch all manner of vehicles traveling at 40mph on Parkside (20mph limit) right past the front doors of the police station every day. If speeding tickets were ever given, the entire bus fleet would cease to operate within a week.

    Why not spend a large part of the budget on enforcing 20mph speed-limiters on all buses and taxis? No bus should ever need to go above 20mph, and it would barely impact the This would essentially regulate the speed of traffic by default, make the roads safer for cyclists and also make Cambridge a better place to live for all.

    It seems a bizarre decision to provide exclusive access status to buses and taxi drivers on any road, when they choose to respect this by abusing their privilege with little more than aggressive anti-social driving and habitual speeding.

    Another good tip would be to introduce smaller buses for Cambridge’s narrow streets. Small enough so their drivers didn’t feel the need to intimidate pedestrians in pavements as they turn corners.

    I could go on, but I think I’ve said enough already.

    If all else fails, something we used to do to ‘influence’ the behaviour of drivers on our road when I lived in a village, was to leave our wheelie bins at the side of the road. Nothing works better than an obstacle if you’d like control of traffic speed on your street. And for the council providing such a deterrent to it’s residents free-of-charge, we must all be eternally thankful

  9. There are 6 schools with thousands of children coming into the Bateman, Panton, Norwich,Coronation streets and Union road area every day in term time. These narrow roads are also already rat runs for avoiding the Catholic Church intersection.
    If the PCCP at the top of Station Road is north of Bateman Street, which it is rumoured to be, it will divert the traffic with its air pollution onto all the children in the area. This will be a wicked antisocial disgrace. Please think again City Deal planners.

  10. I agree with the principles of the Cambridge City Deal and it could bring huge benefits once it’s settled down. However, I do have some concerns about the implementation. The City Council has said it wants to ‘minimise the risk of rat-running” and that is one of the crucial issues.
    As suggested above having a control point (PCCP) on Tenison Rd between Gt Northern Rd and Tenison Avenue might solve much of the problem, as long as the Hills Road PCCP is between Station Road and Bateman Street and Mill Road PCCP at the bridge.
    Yes, this would affect Travis Perkins customers, but isn’t TP moving anyway?

    1. Travis Perkins is moving the timber yard to a new site on the north side of Cambridge (Kilmaine Close); however they will remain on about a third of the existing site, with the other two thirds developed with housing. The site will continue to require deliveries (possibly more frequent because they will be unable to hold as much stock as now), and will be visited by even more builders once Ridgeon’s relocates from Cromwell Road.

  11. Andrew Warren

    I live on Glisson Road, and am very hostile to the entire Curfew Cambridge concept. Having attended the St Paul’s briefing, it was made clear that there was to be no consideration at all for residents who have to leave the city in the morning, and return in the afternoon, all of whom coming from this part of the City will have to travel along Trumpington Road and then apparently double back to reach many regular destinations.
    It is vital , should this ludicrous scheme ever be implemented, that the criteria to measure ” viability” be extended way beyond simply measuring traffic flows into and out of the city centre. They must include impact upon employment , prosperity of city centre businesses, residents satisfaction with these draconian changes, social welfare implications ( carers) and increased mileage and hence greenhouse gas emissions undertaken by those whose vehicles have been diverted. This assessment should take place no later than three months after the introduction of the Curfew. Waiting eigthteen months may lead to irreparable damage.

  12. I’ve thought about this a lot over the last few weeks and discussed the issues with many people. My own opinion is that a congestion charge covering a wider area of the city is the only sensible option. A modest charge with modest reductions for residents would be flexible and fair to all and raise money to invest in other improvements such as cycle lanes. The charges could be reviewed and adjusted just enough to nudge people’s behaviour. Improvements in public transport combined with incentives such as removing the Park and ride parking charges could also encourage people not to drive if they don’t need to. But, and this is a key point, people who NEED to drive such as your plumber or a mother who has a sick child will still be able to.

  13. The consultation process has certainly been unsatisfactory – minds already made up; money has to be spent now; this is the only solution. Most alarming to me were the issues that appeared not to have been considered at all …

    In addition to the rat-runs mentioned above it seemed no-one had considered the issues associated with many drivers turning round having got caught in jams just before the cut off times, and also the issue of knowing what precise time the fines would start and end (car park ticket machines always seem to run fast!).

    We are also told that a congestion charge will not work because residents would have to be charged the full amount (it was news to the councillors I spoke with that the London system operates with a 90% discount for residents). I would find it amusing were it not so serious that the third reason the leaflet dismisses a congestion charge is because there is currently no viable alternative travel option to the private motor car!

    Like some commentators above I am not convinced there is a problem relative to other cities, but if there is, then we need to go back to the drawing board and the money should be spent on something more deserving … and if that means another City, then so be it – with this plan we do not deserve the funds.

  14. Firstly the park and ride should be free.
    Secondly school buses that collect students at park and ride could be provided.
    Thirdly more frequent buses with a wider range and longer hours – and cheaper prices.
    Also the national express airport buses could also stop at the Trumpington park and ride. No need to come into Parkside.
    Then after that the situation should be reviewed.

  15. I do not support these proposals which seem to focus on commuter traffic into the city but they have not taken into account the needs of residents or businesses living inside the control points – the Forbidden Zone. These could include: travelling to and from paid or voluntary employment, taking children to school, taking self or relatives to doctor or hospital – or indeed the train station with heavy bags or a sick animal to a vet.

    Walking or cycling is not always an alternative for everyone. And what about deliveries, builders and other tradespeople, carers, cleaners, doctors? Not to mention businesses in the area. Is it right to expect all these people to make absurdly lengthy detours or hire a taxi or confine all their car travel to between 10.00 and 4.00 pm? Even in an emergency? On pain of being punished by a fine?

    It seems fairer to say, ‘if you need to travel in this area you will have to pay a congestion charge’ rather than ‘if you need to travel in this area you will be fined’. In both cases the costs will bear more heavily on the less well off. But the fine would higher. This is the system in London – devised by a Labour administration and retained by a Conservative one. ( Residents and businesses in the congestion zone pay the charge at a significantly discounted rate either per journey or annually. A bit like residents parking charges here.) We should be nudged into reducing car travel by the carrot of better buses, cycle and walk environment etc and stick of congestion charge. What is currently proposed is punitive and ill thought out.

  16. Miranda Landgraf

    I have witnessed one near accident on Lyndewode Road – furious taxi toppling bicycle, and another resident has witnessed a further two since the closure of Tenison Road. Shutting more roads is not a safe option. Do sticks ever work – really?

  17. Margaret Stanley

    As a resident of Glisson Road I am appalled by these proposals. Traffic is a problem in Cambridge but imposing lockdown on residents at key travelling times during the day is not an intelligent response. A congestion charge would work, park and ride should be free (at least during the hours proposed for the PCCP) school buses particularly for the private schools should be a priority and further residential developments in the area should be accompanied by a traffic management plan.

  18. Robert Harding

    I sent a considered reply to the City Deal Team in July in response to the invitation on their website. I was and am pleased that congestion is being taken seriously. (I cannot agree that because it’s much the same in other cities, nothing need be done; if not, it will get rapidly worse.)

    My suggestion is that a variable rate congestion charge should be introduced. For this to work, vehicles will have to be registered on a suitable website, much as can be done for e.g. the Dartford Crossing (so standard technology). Every registered vehicle in the area (what this would be can be debated) gets a certain number of “free passes” in say any 28 day period. Thereafter entry to the congestion zone is chargeable at a rate that goes up each time it’s used in the 28 day period, maybe maxing out as a penalty after a set number or becoming prohibitively expensive. Differential allowances are possible, according to residential zone, health, societal need, etc.. I think this meets the City Deal’s objection that the scheme should affect all drivers equally regardless of wealth – the scheme gives only minimal advantage to the better off. It also brings in income to pay for better public transport, and provided adequate CCTV checkpoints are put in place, it removes any incentive to rat-run. It could also be tuned to phase in the new scheme rather than have a big-bang start; this would help reduce the chaos that the current scheme will cause on commencement

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