Mill Road bridge ‘closure’ in Cambridge to be discussed in July
The controversial trial closure of Mill Road bridge in Cambridge to all traffic, except buses, cyclists and pedestrians, will finally be discussed next month at a county council committee meeting.
Cllr Peter McDonald and Cllr Gerri Bird, chair and vice-chair of the highways and transport committee at Cambridgeshire County Council, have decided the Mill Road bridge temporary closure will be discussed at the July committee.
Cllr McDonald said: “It is clear from my short time as the new highways and transport committee chair, there are mixed views about this project and a real 50/50 split for and against the closure.
“I know there was a consultation held last year and there was also a six-week survey. Along with Cllr Bird, we need time to understand all the information we’ve received, including the consultation responses, and review all the evidence which has been compiled, speak to partners and officers working on the project which will take some time. Therefore, Mill Road will be discussed at the July highways and transport committee.”
The bridge was closed to cars, vans and lorries in June 2020 under an experimental traffic regulation order in a bid to allow pedestrians more space for social distancing on the bridge.
The move found support from many cyclists, some residents and environmental campaigners, who welcomed the improvement in air quality they said it brought.
But it was fiercely opposed by many Mill Road traders, who have argued for the past year that the inability of cars and vans to cross the bridge has caused them loss of business and headaches in getting stcok delivered.
Piero D'Angelico, spokesperson for the Mill Road Traders’ Association, said: “The new team at the highways committee seems to be taking this very seriously and I'm pleased that they are going to be listening to everyone involved, at least we will finally be heard. They will also be taking into account our 5,000-signature petition which we handed into the council in December asking for the bridge to be reopened to all traffic. It has been a very long wait to get to this point.”