Support for new A14 from Cambs, but action needed on ‘legacy’

PUBLISHED: 15:15 24 May 2014

The proposed A14 scheme.

The proposed A14 scheme.

Archant

The new A14 should not just help to clear our towns and villages of congestion.

The project should also provide a legacy of apprenticeships, new cycle routes and a chance to see any ­artefacts that have been dug up.

Cambridgeshire County Council’s suggested response to the latest consultation on the proposed route of the new A14 is generally supportive but includes a number of areas that need ironing out over the coming months and years, as well as ideas for a legacy.

The council, which is providing £25million towards the £1.35billion scheme between Ellington and Swavesey, says in its response to the consultation, which will need to be approved by the economy and environment committee on Tuesday (May 27), that it supports:

l Widening of the A1 between Brampton and Alconbury.

l Demolition of the viaduct at Huntingdon.

l New links between the current A14 and local Huntingdon roads – as long as they minimise the impact on the commons, and Hinchingbrooke Park Road.

l The Huntingdon southern bypass and River Great Ouse crossing and a ‘green bridge’ to carry a bridleway.

l Widening around Girton and Swavesey and Cambridge north bypass (subject to noise mitigation).

l The proposal for a local access road, subject to capacity issues.

But the council will also look for compensation for disruption to guided bus services, which would be caused by work to a bridge over the A14, an agreement about the costs involved in maintaining a de-trunked A14 and, potentially, some ­commitment to a legacy.

A report to the committee states that discussions about legacy opportunities are taking place, including the creation of apprenticeships in partnership with colleges and activities for schools and groups.

It adds: “Scheme-wide facilities should include improving cycling facilities and linking up severed public rights of way where there would be benefits to the local communities.”

And any interesting historic items found during the work could be put on permanent public display.

INFORMATION: The consultation on the latest A14 proposals runs until June 15. Have your say at ­

www.highways.gov.uk.

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