Businesses have backed a new engagement campaign that asks how best to cut congestion and transform public transport in Greater Cambridge.
Businesses back GCP's 'Choices for Better Journeys' campaign
The leaders of companies across Greater Cambridge have welcomed the Greater Cambridge Partnership’s ‘Choices for Better Journeys’ campaign, which asks people for their views on options for transforming public transport and cutting congestion.
The region’s economic growth means that 44,000 more jobs are expected by 2031 - which could mean an extra 26,000 car journeys every day on already busy roads.
Nearly 3,000 people have already responded to the campaign, which outlines potential ideas to tackle the barriers people have told the GCP they face when travelling in to, out of and around Cambridge.
Steven Boni, travel manager for AstraZeneca, said: “AstraZeneca recognises the transport challenges in and around Cambridge and we believe this world-class city deserves a world-class transport network, with easy access to sustainable and reliable modes of travel.
“We fully support the GCP’s ‘Choices for Better Journeys’ survey to gather views from commuters, residents and businesses on what they expect from a sustainable transport network as well as ways to cut congestion.
“We are also encouraging our 2800+ staff based in Cambridge to take part in the survey and maximise their use of sustainable modes of travel to minimise their impact upon the local infrastructure.”
Derek Jones, chief executive of Babraham Bioscience Technologies Ltd, said: “I welcome the chance for the community to give feedback to the Choices for Better Journeys campaign.
“There will never be easy solutions to the transport problems associated with the rapid growth of the Greater Cambridge area, but only by responding to such opportunities can we agree workable solutions that, on balance, benefit commuters, residents and businesses.”
Adam Greenwood-Byrne, CEO at RealVNC, added "Getting into Cambridge from outside the region can be a nightmare at the moment with more and more cars on the roads. If we can find ways to reduce cars on the roads at peak times we will make it much easier to get more people to and from work or their place of education in a more timely way.”
Claire Ruskin, CEO of the Cambridge Network and a member of the GCP’s Executive Board, said: “There is no magic solution but there are ways we can help more people get to and from work and school without the uncertainty of daily traffic jams.
“We can’t make our roads bigger so have to make some hard choices and we’d like to know whether people who travel here regularly have preferences. We need to be fair and we have to be bold to make a difference. Please let us know your preferences.”
‘Choices for Better Journeys’ asks residents, commuters and businesses about a range of issues, including:
- what is needed to transform public transport to offer a better alternative to the car for them.
- different ideas for tackling congestion, improving air quality and freeing-up road space for quicker public transport – including workplace parking levies, flexible charging to drive at the most congested times, pollution charges for older vehicles, and limiting access.
- how best to fund an improved public transport system for the future.
People are being asked to submit their views in an online survey designed in collaboration with Cambridge Ahead, and in association with Cambridge Network and the Cambridgeshire Chambers of Commerce.
Jane Paterson-Todd, CEO, Cambridge Ahead, said: “I’m pleased to see that there have already been nearly 3,000 responses to this survey, which is the first step to realising an achievable, measurable transport ambition.
“Managing congestion is key to growing a sustainable city, and working together with the GCP and other membership organisations on this survey allows us to understand the needs and expectations of the business community and residents.”
The options outlined in the campaign include physical measures to make the best use of the available road space and forms of road-based charging and parking levies to fund the £20m required every year to provide a fast and reliable public transport system.
As well as the survey, people can talk to GCP officers at events being held around Greater Cambridge, including at Park and Ride sites and in towns and villages, including Royston, Ely and King’s Lynn.
The Greater Cambridge Partnership is the local delivery body for a City Deal with central Government, bringing powers and investment, worth up to £1 billion over 15 years, to vital improvements in infrastructure, supporting and accelerating the creation of 44,000 new jobs, 33,500 new homes and 420 additional apprenticeships.