North East Cambridge Area Action Plan Issues and Options 2019

Representation ID: 33515

Received: 24/03/2019

Respondent: Dr Katharine Hutchinson

Representation Summary:

A more detailed education plan is needed, including provision of a secondary school. A site for this school should be identified at an early stage.

Full text:

I am shocked that the current draft does not include a more detailed education plan for the area.

I would expect to see a secondary school being explicitly planned for and provided to serve a development of this size, yet when I attended the plan exhibition I was told that there was no need for a secondary school to be built at NEC as the children living on the development would be accommodated at other city secondary schools.

If there is no secondary school on the site, then 11-16 year olds are being discriminated against as they will be forced to commute, on a daily basis, to go to school. This would be counter to the plan's aim of a high degree of internalisation (paragraph 3.3). At least some of these external trips will be by car, putting additional pressure onto Milton Road and King's Hedges Road. Point (v) of the Executive Summary acknowledges the road networks capacity issues in this area and notes that the development should aim to reduce external trips - a secondary school on site would help work towards this aim. Travel to school is a significant daily movement and it has not been considered adequately in the current draft of the plan.

Point (xiii) of the executive summary notes that an overarching objective of the plan is to develop a place with a strong identify.... excellent neighbourhood facilities'. A secondary school should be at the heart of this. I do not consider that a development of this size without a secondary school could realistically be described as having 'excellent facilities''. Failing to provide a secondary school would also not sit well with the vision for an 'inherently walkable' district 'where everything on your doorstep'

Paragraph 7.24 of the plan notes the need for a diverse range of amenities on site, including education. This should be backed up by planning for a new secondary school on site. I believe that a secondary school should be included in the plan from a very early stage as land will need to be allocated for this use.