Realising CAM’s potential as a truly regionwide network, with flexibility to extend across the whole of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, is set to form a key part of the project’s next steps.
Potential extensions to Peterborough, Chatteris and Ramsey will be worked on, alongside the CAM routes as currently proposed, in the project’s next business case phase which will begin from April 2021. The potential for more stops along the existing network is also going to be explored, to further develop CAM’s ability to reach more people and places.
The release of the CAM Conceptual Designs, which could help shape the future delivery of the system, has further highlighted the potential to create a network which can be extended more easily and quickly than with traditional transport modes.
There have been regular calls in meetings of the Combined Authority Board for CAM to extend further than the current proposed network. Calls to extend CAM to Chatteris, Ramsey and Peterborough have been raised frequently.
Within the new business case phase for CAM, routes to Peterborough, Chatteris and Ramsey will be considered. This work will be in addition to the continued development of the CAM network as currently proposed, running from St Neots to Haverhill and Alconbury to Mildenhall, connected with tunnels in Cambridge city centre.
The CAM Concept designs have put forward adaptable, flexible vehicles and infrastructure which could significantly reduce the initial estimated capital costs of around £4 billion, through a system which is tailored to the needs of the region and its economy.
CAM has already been developed with the potential for extensions further north into the county in mind and further work will be needed to explore the feasibility in more detail.
Mayor James Palmer said:
“CAM is a system for all of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. While we are updating the current indicative route map to include potential connections to Chatteris, Ramsey and Peterborough today, this is not the end of the line.
“The CAM Network will be a platform for growth across the entire region; a driver of sustainable growth, connecting people and jobs with new housing solutions built in the right places and in the right way. We want to hear from those communities across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough who want to be a part of that.
“What these conceptual designs have shown is that we can deliver world class, future-ready public transport right across the region. We have some groundbreaking ideas for flexible, adaptable, deliverable public transport that can truly reach every corner of our county. These designs show us how stops along the routes can be simple and lightweight, allowing us to connect more communities.
“We need communities and businesses to stand up and make the case for CAM to come to them. If there is a demand for more jobs, and new homes for people, underpinned by sustainable infrastructure, then we can work with those places to explore those possibilities.
“We want to build on these conceptual designs, and build on CAM’s potential to grow and adapt to the needs of the region throughout the next century and more. To set our economy up for a future of more jobs and opportunity, of environmental sustainability and a better quality of life, we need infrastructure that works for the whole of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.”
In 2021 work will continue to establish the special purpose vehicle One CAM Limited as the lead delivery body for the project’s delivery.