Draft North East Cambridge Area Action Plan

Representation ID: 56022

Received: 05/10/2020

Respondent: Endurance Estates

Agent: Barton Willmore

Representation Summary:

Draft Policy 22 sets out a maximum vehicle trip budget for the AAP on to Milton Road during AM and PM peaks. In order to comply with this trip budget the area as a whole will need to significantly reduce existing car-drive mode share provision of sustainable travel options and significant reductions in existing parking allocation to 0.5 spaces per dwelling as a starting point, with an expectation that lower levels will be achieved for all housing types and tenures.

The supporting Transport Topic Paper sets out the requirements for modal share based on this trip budget, which for 27,000 jobs and 7,600 homes requires a reduction of vehicle mode share to 26% for employment uses and 10-13% for residential uses. We would question how achievable these targets are for such a large quantum of dwellings and employment uses?

Looking specifically at the issue of “discouraging car use” as a key element of the Vision for NEC, we have the following comments:

• The NEC AAP introduces the concept of a vehicular trip budget for the NEC area, which effectively means that future levels of traffic flow along Milton Road and Kings Hedges Road are no different to existing levels of traffic flow. This is due to limited highway capacity, plus the negative impacts of unfettered traffic growth on air quality and place-making, amongst other matters.
• Delivery of the vehicular trip budget requires a significant reduction in the car driver mode share for the area. For employment uses, the reduction is from an existing 71% to a future 29%. This is a significant and unprecedented reduction. The reduction in car driver mode share (for the AM peak) for residential uses is from an existing 29% to 12%.
• The reductions will require existing employment uses within the NEC area to reduce their current levels of car parking, since car parking provision is inherently linked to car trip generation. It is unclear how this will be achieved. Trinity College, the owners of the Cambridge Science Park, does have a car parking management plan that seeks no net change in the Science Park’s car parking provision by 2030 compared to existing levels, but it does not seek to achieve a reduction in existing car parking levels. The car parking provision for Cambridge Regional College will need to nearly halve from 621 spaces (this is the current maximum demand) to 390 spaces.
• Future employment developments within the NEC area will have stringent car parking standards imposed on them, which can be deliverable for new developments. However, these car parking standards will need to be even more stringent if the existing employment uses in the area do not reduce their own levels of car parking significantly.
• For residential uses, achieving the vehicular trip budget will reduce average car parking provision to no more than 0.5 spaces per dwelling across NEC. This is unprecedented in Cambridge for such a scale of development.

These findings should be carefully considered by the Councils in considering the implications of the proposed strategy regarding car use at NEC. We would also highlight that the strategy of discouraging car use is heavily dependent upon the delivery of the CAM, new cycle routes and adequate rail services as alternative modes of travel, although the time horizons for the delivery of these projects remains unclear, if indeed some are delivered at all.