Controversial plans for a workplace parking levy (WPL) in Cambridge are set to be taken forward following a major consultation.
At a meeting later this month the Greater Cambridge City Deal (GCCD) Executive Board will be asked to agree to further work on seven proposed measures to tackle congestion, including co-designing a WPL scheme with employers.
An eighth proposal, for peak-time congestion control points, which would have seen rush hour ‘road closures’, did not gain public support and officers have recommended that it is not taken forward.
However, GCCD said that, ‘as a direct result of feedback’, board members will for the first time be asked to consider specific measures to tackle air pollution – ‘for example through targeting the worst polluters or fiscal intervention through introduction of a Clean Air Zone’.
Cllr Lewis Herbert, Cambridge City Council leader and chair of the GCCD Executive Board, said: ‘No solution is going to be pain free but the City Deal’s commitment to working in partnership with business and the community to deal with this problem remains, including further future dialogue before final decisions.’
Cllr Herbert said officers had also added proposals for ‘local interventions in the most congested areas of central Cambridge’ to reduce vehicles entering central Cambridge and increase bus reliability.
The WPL was the second ‘least preferred’ option in the consultation, with 40.6% of respondents saying it would worsen their journey.
Under the proposals, officers would work with employers during 2017 on the details of the WPL scheme and ‘determine the local transport priorities that will receive the revenue raised, building on employer evidence of transport needs and coordinated with Council infrastructure planners’.
The other proposals from the consultation that will be taken forward are:
- Better public transport and better Park & Ride options
- Better cycling and walking facilities
- On-street parking controls to discourage commuter parking in residential areas (being progressed by the councils separately)
- Smart technology to help people make smart travel choices
- Further investment in a travel planning service to help people and businesses adapt
- Improvements to public space and an increased focus on tackling air pollution and improving roadside air quality
A city-wide congestion charge was ruled out before the consultation.