There are currently five Park & Ride facilities in Cambridge: Babraham, Newmarket, Milton, Madingley and Trumpington. These facilities provide parking so people can leave their cars and ride by bus into the City centre.
The Cambridge Light Rail network would link to the same general locations as five of those sites. Some adjustments are suggested to the locations of the four sites at Newmarket, Milton, Madingley and Trumpington in order to optimise points of connection to the Light Rail network and the wider region, and to better locate these facilities close to major highways (M11 and A14 in particular) (see table below).
Proposals have already been published by the City Deal and others to relocate the Newmarket and Trumpington Park & Rides, while a new Park & Ride has been proposed for the Madingley Mulch Roundabout near the junction of the A428 / A1303. Cambridge Connect supports a Park & Ride at the Girton Interchange rather than Madingley Mulch Roundabout because it would have superior connections on the M11 / A14 / A428 (assuming full connectivity at the junction is addressed). Moreover, travel to a Park & Ride at Girton Interchange on the A428 from the west and in particular Cambourne would be easily facilitated on this under-utilised section of 4-lane highway. This approach has a dual benefit of facilitating connections onto the M11 and A14 West from the A428, which would also alleviate current congestion down Madingley Rise (A1303) which occurs at morning peak hours by vehicles attempting to access the M11 South.
Suggested Cambridge Park & Ride facility relocations
|Name||Current location||Suggested location||Reason for move||Light Rail Stop|
|Newmarket||A1303||A14||Improve connection to A14. Avoid congestion along A1303.||‘Wing’|
|Milton||A10||A10 / 14||Move closer to Light rail stop.||Science Park|
|Madingley||Madingley Road||Girton Interchange M11/A14/A428||Improve connection to towns in north and west. Superior strategic location to Madingley Mulch proposal by City Deal.||Northwest|
|Trumpington||Trumpington Road||Hauxton M11||Improve connection to M11. Avoid congestion along Trumpington Road.||Hauxton|
Cambridge Connect suggests that consideration also be given to new Park & Ride facilities, locating these strategically so they can help facilitate travel to and from Cambridge by public transport from further out than is presently the case. Park & Ride facilities have traditionally been located close to City peripheries because this tends to engender greater patronage. However, this approach alone sends a clear message that people commuting from surrounding towns and villages are fully expected, indeed are encouraged, to drive by private vehicles to these points. The majority of these journeys will be made in single occupant vehicles, which are much less energy-efficient than public transport. This seems to run counter to the objectives of a more sustainable transport strategy for the region, and therefore the policy of locating Park & Rides solely around the periphery of Cambridge seems to warrant further careful consideration.
A new Barton Park & Ride / Park & Bike facility, as suggested below, has also been proposed in City Deal proposals related to the ‘Western Orbital’.
Suggested new Cambridge Park & Ride facilities
|Name||Suggested location||Reason||Heavy / Light Rail Stop|
|Barton||M11 / A603||Reduce congestion on Barton Road. This might primarily be a Park & Bike facility, with an improved cycleway into the City. Buses might also serve the facility, although Cambridge Connect would not support a dedicated busway or buslane on Barton Road. The need for a Park & Ride facility at this location has not yet been demonstrated by data on demand, and there remains a question mark over whether this site is needed. Moreover, should a new Park & Ride be established at the Girton Interchange, which is suggested above as being a superior location, then the need for the facility at Barton is even more open to question.||None|
|Fulbourn||Fulbourn near rail line.||Serve people east of Cambridge. Link to Light Rail station at Fulbourn / Capital Park.||Fulbourn|
|Cambourne||Cambourne||Enable commuters from Cambourne to travel the full journey to Cambridge and nearby employment centres by public transport (bus / Light Rail).||None|
|Foxton||Near Foxton rail station on A10.||Enable commuters a connection at Foxton heavy rail Station.||Foxton|
|Bar Hill||Bar Hill||Enable commuters from Bar Hill to travel the full journey to Cambridge and nearby employment centres by public transport (bus / Light Rail).||None|
Park & Ride / Park & Bike facilities could be strategically connected by ‘Orbital‘ bus services, which would focus on enabling journeys around the City, serving those people that have no need to travel into the City itself.
School transport services could also be connected to Park & Rides, reducing the current unnecessarily high number of ‘school run’ vehicles.