James Palmer, Mayor of Cambridgeshire & Peterborough, today welcomed the decision by Greater Cambridge Partnership to rethink their C2C – Cambourne to Cambridge – busway project and to work with the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority to build a route that will genuinely form the first part of the Cambridgeshire Autonomous Metro.
Mayor Palmer said:
“I was elected on a mandate to build the Cambridgeshire Autonomous Metro as a transport solution for the whole of our area, and that has been my enduring goal through all my dealings with the GCP.
“Every time I have intervened on this issue, I have been publicly criticised by the GCP, but my interventions have both highlighted major problems and brought about significant changes. After the pause in 2018 we agreed to incorporate the C2C proposal into the CAM project, and my request for a rethink in February has now made it clear that the current route is not compatible with CAM. I am glad that GCP has now acknowledged the continued significant community opposition to its proposals and has agreed to work with the CPCA to ensure the route will provide a transport network for the future that benefits our whole area, as I have consistently asked them to do.
“I have regularly made the point that the joint working mechanisms we currently have are inadequate; I and the CPCA Board have never officially been asked our view on projects key to the Local Transport Plan, and officers have only been consulted on minor technical issues, not the route itself. The CPCA has never approved the detailed C2C route the GCP are now rethinking, and I have always been clear that their preferred route does not accord with our plan for a rapid 24-hour Metro system.
“The CAM is much more than a piecemeal infrastructure upgrade. It delivers joined-up, world class public transport which is an enabler of a better economic future for everyone. It will mean better journeys, but also unlock homes our region urgently needs and stimulate the business and jobs growth to help more people share in prosperity.
“I hope we can now end this series of public statements, and that the GCP will work with the CPCA as the Transport Authority and determiner of the Local Transport Plan to make our shared aspirations for CAM Metro a reality; a 21st century transport solution for the whole county, harnessing all the ingenuity Cambridgeshire and Peterborough has to offer, that will be a global exemplar of public transport for communities like ours.”