North Area Fen Road steering group – first meeting

Tonight was the first meeting secured by Cllr Manning and the East Chesterton Liberal Democrats as a result of their campaign to get the new Station to benefit the area.

That campaign got a public meeting attended by over 100 people –

The meeting was well attended by residents and Liberal Democrat Councillors.

Officers from the County Council Highways and City Council Planning presented various information to us about the desire for an access road:

  • From a planning perspective, Patsy Dell from the City Council explained that the Cambridge local plan will have a bearing on the overal situation and there are Governance agreements between the City, County and South Cambs.
  • Jeremy Smith, from highways stated again that the project will not prevent anything from being built.
  • Brain Stinton talked about what could be done down Fen Road itself to prevent speeding.

Cllr Manning pressed the point that many residents echoed: “No matter the complexities from the point of view of planning and integration between the different authorities, we absolutely must push and help officers to get the best result for local residents. I asked that there is a clear report back to the steering group on the vaiability or not of the two steering road options (onto the A14 and onto Cowley Road).”

There were also suggestions for underpasses and on Fen Road itself, it cost is a problem, to simply remove the current speed cushions. Cllr Znajek explained “It doesn’t matter how this is funded or who is doing it, we must get a benefit to locals from the area.

Cllr Manning also raised the issue of parking on Fen Road / satellite streets that might happen to avoid getting charged for using the station car park: “Officers have this in hand with their plans and we wait to see what they come back with.”

Cllr Manning is also concerned about possible plans to spend up to £1 million on a cycle bridge (either the Green Dragon or a new one) which he believes should be used in preference on Fen Road. He will be following this up with officers from highways.

Officers have taken away actions to draw up some high levels options for us to consider at the next meeting in a month’s time.

Police Priorities Changed to Tackle Fen Road Bullies

We need to stop Fen Road from being a race track

At Thursday night’s North Area Committee Meeting there were a number of proposed priorities for our local police officers. The committee was challenged to choose 3 from a shortlist of about seven for the Police to take forward.

Your local lib dem councillors, Roman Znajek, Susannah Kerr and Ian Manning ensured that one of those was policing targetting anti social driving on Fen Road.

Commenting Cllr Znajek: “It is important that all relevant authorities can follow up on this important meeting: setting a police priority in the area is the first step in this process and I hope we see real change for residents.”

Campaigner Clare Blair was pleased with the action as part of the work that she and Cllr Manning put into their discussion paper: “We put a lot of effort that resulted in a packed public meeting, so I’m looking forward to seeing things improve.”

“We need to ensure people can see tangible results from such a good turn out at Thursday night’s meeting” said Cllr Kerr “and we’ll only get that by setting priorities like this and getting results, so we hope the Police will be able to report back positive action soon.”

Lib Dems tackle Fen Road problems head-on for Residents

Cambridge Liberal Democrats are tackling problems on the City’s Fen Road head-on by working cross-party and with multiple agencies to find a solution for residents.

Cllr Ian Manning and resident Clare Blair took control of the issue this evening (Thursday, January 26) at a meeting of Cambridge City Council’s North Area Committee.

A working party has been set up which will co-ordinate the work between officers and councillors from the City Council, Cambridgeshire County Council and South Cambs District Council.

At the North Area Committee meeting, which was very well attended, Cambridgeshire County Council Cabinet member, Ian Bates, heard directly from residents about the daily issues they experience such as anti-social driving, noise and speeding and traffic calming measures that don’t work.

Mrs Blair said: “It was great to see so many people come to voice their opinions and experiences directly to those in power. A wide range of solutions was discussed and there was a clear preference for an alternative access route out of Fen Road to provide a real solution to problems in the area.”

Particularly important is the cross area working that the initiative brings. Cllr Hazel Smith of South Cambs District commented “A solution to the issues on Fen Road will only be found by joined up working between both districts and the County Council, and I’m pleased that this will be taken on by North Area.”

Cllr Manning said that the Chesterton Station project presents a real opportunity to make large scale change.

“I’m glad we’re looking at really radical solutions like a different route out of Fen Road, which will divert traffic away from East Chesterton, as well as highways improvements to the Water Street/Water Lane area and better traffic calming,” he said.

The item was put on the agenda of North Area Committee following a paper written by Cllr Ian Manning and Clare Blair which can be found here:

Fen Road to be discussed at North Area Community Forum

Before Christmas, Councillor Manning and campaigner Clare Blair produced a paper documenting the many problems for residents in the Fen Road area of East Chesterton.

They secured a special slot at this weeks North Area Community Forum in order to get together all the relevant parties to try and find solutions.

The meeting will be at the Shirley School, Nuffield Road, starting at 1930.

The paper Clare and Ian wrote can be read here: 20111121FenRoad Proposals.

Cllr Manning urges residents to come to the meeting so they can put all their concerns directly to those in power, including the County Council’s cabinet member Cllr Ian Bates: “I’m very pleased Cllr Bates, who is new to the job, has agreed to come to this meeting to listen to residents’ concerns. I’m sure he’ll learn a lot and I hope we can agree some proposed solutions which he’ll be able to support.”

Clare Blair said the new station provided an exciting opportunity: “If we, as a community, can impress on officers and the ruling group at the County Council the need to act on the issues in this area, the new Station in Chesterton may well provide the means to enact change.”

The City’s MP Julian Huppert supports the pair in their efforts: “I applaud Ian and Clare on the work that has gone into this document. I hope residents will take this opportunity to make their views known so that a solution can be found quickly.”

Streetscene repair vandalism so fast we didn’t see it!

It is always good to report good performance of Council staff, and this is a case in point.

Local resident Lil Speed reported to Clare Blair today that there was vandalism to bins on Green End Road Rec – by the time Cllr Manning checked this out on the way home from work, he found the damage repaired!: