Extension B provides an overground link parallel to the A14 from the Girton Interchange (‘Northwest’) to the Science Park. This would serve residents on the north side of Cambridge, for example in Arbury, Kings Hedges and Orchard Park, and would also serve the outlying towns and villages along the north such as Girton, Oakington, Willingham, Histon, Cottenham, Milton etc.
Part of the line from Histon Road to Cambridge Regional College would follow the alignment of the existing guided busway. It is envisaged at this stage that the main route of the guided busway from St Ives would terminate near Regional College, where passengers would switch onto the Light Rail service. Given the anticipated frequency, speed and efficiency of the Light Rail service, we anticipate that passengers welcome the opportunity to access the City much more quickly than is possible by bus.
Extension B would only be practical if at least the Isaac Newton Line, and probably also Extension A, were implemented. Extension B may be viewed as of lower priority than others, although it would provide a valuable service to commuters in the north, providing a good option for access into the City and to other destinations, which should help to reduce congestion substantially along Huntingdon, Histon and Milton Roads and the A14. This option therefore potentially offers benefits to commuters and residents alike in the north of Cambridge.
Extension B could play a significant role by completing a ‘Circle Line’ and providing a faster link between the Science Park and the Cambridge West Campus. The costs of this line should be relatively modest, because it is short, it is overground and would utilise the existing guided busway alignment between Histon Road and Cambridge Regional College.
A ‘Circle Line’ offers users more destination options, and may therefore be seen as desirable by many.