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‘Don’t lose out’ – Dr Nik urges

Credit Photo by Ely Standard

Dr Nik urges stragglers to vote in last days of St Ives road survey

With just three days left to comment on the six options for improving the road network around St Ives, Mayor of Cambridgeshire & Peterborough, Dr Nik Johnson, urges people who haven’t yet spoken up to go online and have their say.

The Combined Authority has set up a dedicated website mapping out ‘six of the best’ – a range of six potential improvement schemes for residents and road users to consider, comment on, and select their favourite options.

Thousands have already visited the site but the Combined Authority hopes more will give their opinions and insights in the last few days.

Dr Nik Johnson, Mayor of Cambridgeshire & Peterborough:

Don’t lose out – this is the very start of the process and absolutely nothing has been decided yet, so what you feed in will truly inform the thinking as plans develop. There are six options for you to consider, and several thousand people have already visited the website to see the ideas for themselves.

“This is about getting the best result for the St Ives community, and these options have been worked up in cooperation with project partners, local councils and the Combined Authority leaders who are working with me to come up with the right solution for this fantastic market town.

“So please look at the six options in the next three days, choose your preferred option, get your friends and neighbours to do the same, and send in your comments  so that the Combined Authority has the fullest possible understanding of your views.”

Pinch-points, rat-runs and congestion hotspots are all targeted in the potential plans, plus there are suggested improvements for bus travellers, cyclists, walkers, and horse-riders, as well as junction upgrades and three bypass options that link into plans to free up the A141 around Huntingdon.

In collaboration, Huntingdonshire District Council is cooperating closely with the Combined Authority on plans to improve the A141 at Huntingdon as well as the St Ives road network.  The two road systems are heavily interlinked so it is envisaged that both improvement schemes will be developed in harmony to complement one another.

The project board includes Cambridgeshire County Council, Huntingdonshire District Council, Network Rail and Highways England alongside the  the Combined Authority.

The “Have Your Say” public engagement, set up by Mayor Dr Johnson, is not a statutory requirement but initiated voluntarily by the Combined Authority to give people in the area the earliest possible access to the ‘long-list’ options and help them make their views known before any short-listing or decision has been made on a final scheme.

The option survey began on 14th June and runs to the 5th July. All users of the road network are encouraged to respond, but the views of St Ives people and businesses are especially sought, and those from villagers in the area.

People wishing to assess and comment upon the six improvement options can still do so until 17.00pm this coming Monday, 5th July on the “Have Your Say” website at www.your-stives.co.uk

With the public’s preferred options fed in, the whole St Ives case will be aligned with the results of the A141 survey and taken back to the Combined Authority’s transport and Infrastructure committee by October this year.

“What we learn from both the public surveys will help us to create a holistic and properly connected plan for both the A141 Huntingdon area and St Ives – enabling growth in homes and jobs that is well-managed  and more sustainable for the community. We want the best and greenest solution for people in this whole area, who have waited a long time to  to get this road network improved,” said Mayor Dr Johnson.

At present, the Combined Authority is in the first stage with the Strategic Outline Business Case, or SOBC, based on potential options emerging from a study of  issues around St Ives and what can be done about them.

After this stage, Government rules will require a further two stages which must be completed as below but prior to moving to these stages approval from the Combined Authority Board is required:

2) Outline Business Case (OBC)

3) Full Business Case (FBC)

At the first – and current – stage the scheme status is at “identification of an issue and early exploration of potential solutions with only concept designs”.

As the Business Case process moves along stages the detail / information grows.

Source:  Press release from Cambridge/Peterborough Commbined Authority 2nd July