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Cambridge's largest traffic survey will help cut congestion and improve air quality

By Ben Comber

10 05 16 General views Cambridge. Bus / buses traffic congestion East Rd. Picture: Keith Heppell
10 05 16 General views Cambridge. Bus / buses traffic congestion East Rd. Picture: Keith Heppell

Temporary ANPR cameras will monitor the 200,000 vehicles coming into and out of the city every day.

A comprehensive traffic survey commissioned by the Greater Cambridge City Deal will be taking place in June to discover the latest traffic trends.

The partnership has commissioned an independent firm to carry out the traffic survey over seven continuous days in June, within school and university term time.

The survey will help planners better understand how to develop Cambridge’s transport network. With over 200,000 vehicles coming in or out of the city every day, the survey will provide the latest trends on traffic flows within Cambridge.

Chris Tunstall, interim City Deal transport director, said: “There is the need for a robust and refreshed evidence base in respect of our transport proposals and this survey - which will be used to supplement existing data - will considerably assist in our assessment of Cambridge’s future transport requirements.”

The survey will be used for understanding vehicle emissions, origin and destination movements and journey times. It will ultimately be used for travel planning purposes and help identify options to improve air quality.

It will use cutting-edge Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology. The information collected by the ANPR cameras will be sanitised to remove any personal data and therefore the results will be completely anonymous and individuals or specific vehicles will not be identifiable.

The data will also be used to update the county’s traffic modelling system, which takes account of seasonal trends. The results of the survey will be used in conjunction with other sources, including the latest traffic counts.

Hilary Holden, lead officer for city access at the Greater Cambridge City Deal, said: “The traffic survey is the largest of its kind in Cambridge and will provide up-to-date information on traffic trends. These statistics will be part of a dataset to enable transport professionals to plan a sustainable transport network.”

“Our small thriving city is always a hive of activity and it’s hard to find a quiet time, so roadworks, traffic incidents and the weather will all be taken into account when we use the survey data.”

Residents may notice the cameras being attached to lamp and signposts, and fixed to bridges and other infrastructure. The cameras will be removed after the survey has been completed.


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