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Councillor predicts report will call for Mill Road bridge in Cambridge to be closed to private motor vehicles again

A report on the future of Mill Road and a recommendation on whether to close the bridge to traffic again will be published early next month.

Cambridgeshire County Council has confirmed the publication date will be July 4.

Cllr Dave Baigent during the debate on Mill Road bridge. Picture: Keith Heppell
Cllr Dave Baigent during the debate on Mill Road bridge. Picture: Keith Heppell

Cambridge city councillor Dave Baigent, who sits on the executive board of the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP), which is the author of the report, has tweeted that he expects it to recommend that the bridge closes to private motor vehicles.

He said he expects it to recommend to county councillors that they approve a “similar restriction as last time, plus Blue Badge access and potential taxi access”.

That position has not been confirmed.

The debate comes after a temporary closure to private motor vehicles was trialled during the pandemic, then lifted.

[Read more: The future of Mill Road in Cambridge: Four groups make their case]

Mill Road 4 Cambridge spokesperson Paul Lythgoe said: “We will welcome it if the GCP has taken the view that Mill Road should again be restricted to traffic. We possibly have no objection to the cars with Blue Badges (for people with disabilities) being admitted over the bridge and not being restricted. But we would prefer to see taxis coming over the bridge limited to Hackney carriages registered within Cambridge because they also have to be able to carry disabled passengers.”

Cllr Dave Baigent at Romsey Labour Club in Mill Road, Cambridge. Picture: Keith Heppell
Cllr Dave Baigent at Romsey Labour Club in Mill Road, Cambridge. Picture: Keith Heppell

Cycling charity Camcycle added: “Camcycle is looking forward to learning the results of the latest consultation. We’re pleased that a comprehensive and evidence-based approach has been applied to making this important decision about Mill Road. We hope that the report has considered community support as well as issues around air pollution, safety, congestion and what it takes to create great public spaces and safe active travel environments.

“Urgent action must be taken to improve Mill Road as well as the other streets and roads in Cambridge to ensure our city is able to meet targets on carbon reduction and increasing active travel, so we call on the county council’s highways committee to continue to press for rapid progress on these schemes.”

Mill Road Traders spokesperson Piero D’Angelico said: “The report will have to come out with a solution for the whole city, not just for Mill Road. So if they prove that closing Mill Road will be beneficial for the city, if there is evidence for that, then yes by all means do it. But I know there’s lots of issues with traffic in Cambridge and just closing the bridge is not going to solve all the problems. We trust the local authority will do a good job.”

A county council spokesperson said: “We understand a report from the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) will be coming to the next highways and transport committee on July 12. This report will set out GCP’s recommendations following their consultation work on Mill Road. The committee papers will be published on July 4.”

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