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Agenda and minutes

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Items
No. Item

21/1/DCF

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

No declarations were declared.

21/2/DCF

Application and Petition Details (16/1134/OUT / West Cambridge Site Madingley Road Cambridge Cambridgeshire)

Application No:    16/1134/OUT

Site Address:    West Cambridge Site Madingley Road Cambridge Cambridgeshire

Description:  Outline planning permission with all matters reserved is sought for up to 383,300m2 of development comprising up to 370,000m2 of academic floorspace (Class D1 space), commercial/research institute floorspace (Class B1b and sui generis research uses), of which not more than 170,000m2 will be commercial floorspace (Class B1b); up to 2,500m2 nursery floorspace (Class D1); up to 1000m2 of retail/food and drink floorspace (Classes A1-A5); up to 4,100m2 and not less than 3,000m2 for assembly and leisure floorspace (Class D2); up to 5,700m2 of sui generis uses, including Energy Centre and Data Centre; associated infrastructure including roads (including adaptations to highway junctions on Madingley Road), pedestrian, cycle and vehicle routes, parking, drainage, open spaces, landscaping and earthworks; and demolition of existing buildings and breaking up of hardstanding.

Applicant:  Chancellors and Masters

Agent:  Jim Strike, AECOM

Address:  71 High Holborn London WC1V 6QS

Lead Petitioner:  Resident of Clerk Maxwell Road

Case Officer:    Fiona Bradley

 

Text of Petition:  

 

We the undersigned petition the Council to convene a Development Control Forum in relation to planning application 16/1134/OUT Revised Outline Planning Proposal for the West Cambridge Site, Madingley Road, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire. We are particularly concerned by the proposal contained within the Outline Plan to build a multi-storey car park for 450 cars on the corner of Clerk Maxwell Road (CMR) and Madingley Road, and by the applicant’s plan to require all cars using the carpark and all service vehicles visiting the eastern end of the site to enter and depart via CMR.

 

The grounds for asking for a Forum on this application are as follows:

1. The creation of a multi-storey carpark conflicts with Cambridge Local Plan Policy 80, which states that ‘Development will be supported where it demonstrates prioritisation of access is by walking, cycling and public transport, and is accessible for all’.

2. The location is inappropriate for siting a multi-storey carpark. CMR and Madingley Road are residential roads, and the building would be right on the edge of a conservation area. The first thing visitors approaching the site from the city will see is a multi-storey carpark, which would be an underwhelming introduction to a ‘world-class facility’ and out of keeping aesthetically with its surroundings.

3. The applicant has offered to fund the construction of cycle paths down both sides of Clerk Maxwell Road, which would leave insufficient space to build a feeder lane in CMR for vehicles to queue to get into the car park, adding to congestion and pollution on the corner and creating the possibility that cars will back up onto Madingley Road.

4. On 1 July 2020, planning approval was granted for the construction of 35 dwellings on the site of the former Cocks and Hens Tennis Club on CMR. The entrance to this development, where an open play area will be provided for young children and teenagers, is opposite the proposed entrance to the multi-storey car park. This conjunction of traffic and play area  ...  view the full agenda text for item 21/2/DCF

Minutes:

Application No:    16/1134/OUT

Site Address:    West Cambridge Site Madingley Road Cambridge Cambridgeshire

Description:  Outline planning permission with all matters reserved is sought for up to 383,300m2 of development comprising up to 370,000m2 of academic floorspace (Class D1 space), commercial/research institute floorspace (Class B1b and sui generis research uses), of which not more than 170,000m2 will be commercial floorspace (Class B1b); up to 2,500m2 nursery floorspace (Class D1); up to 1000m2 of retail/food and drink floorspace (Classes A1-A5); up to 4,100m2 and not less than 3,000m2 for assembly and leisure floorspace (Class D2); up to 5,700m2 of sui generis uses, including Energy Centre and Data Centre; associated infrastructure including roads (including adaptations to highway junctions on Madingley Road), pedestrian, cycle and vehicle routes, parking, drainage, open spaces, landscaping and earthworks; and demolition of existing buildings and breaking up of hardstanding.

Applicant:  Chancellors and Masters

Agent:  Jim Strike, AECOM

Address:  71 High Holborn London WC1V 6QS

Lead Petitioner:  Resident of Clerk Maxwell Road

Case Officer:    Fiona Bradley

 

Text of Petition:  

 

We the undersigned petition the Council to convene a Development Control Forum in relation to planning application 16/1134/OUT Revised Outline Planning Proposal for the West Cambridge Site, Madingley Road, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire. We are particularly concerned by the proposal contained within the Outline Plan to build a multi-storey car park for 450 cars on the corner of Clerk Maxwell Road (CMR) and Madingley Road, and by the applicant’s plan to require all cars using the carpark and all service vehicles visiting the eastern end of the site to enter and depart via CMR.

 

The grounds for asking for a Forum on this application are as follows:

1. The creation of a multi-storey carpark conflicts with Cambridge Local Plan Policy 80, which states that ‘Development will be supported where it demonstrates prioritisation of access is by walking, cycling and public transport, and is accessible for all’.

2. The location is inappropriate for siting a multi-storey carpark. CMR and Madingley Road are residential roads, and the building would be right on the edge of a conservation area. The first thing visitors approaching the site from the city will see is a multi-storey carpark, which would be an underwhelming introduction to a ‘world-class facility’ and out of keeping aesthetically with its surroundings.

3. The applicant has offered to fund the construction of cycle paths down both sides of Clerk Maxwell Road, which would leave insufficient space to build a feeder lane in CMR for vehicles to queue to get into the car park, adding to congestion and pollution on the corner and creating the possibility that cars will back up onto Madingley Road.

4. On 1 July 2020, planning approval was granted for the construction of 35 dwellings on the site of the former Cocks and Hens Tennis Club on CMR. The entrance to this development, where an open play area will be provided for young children and teenagers, is opposite the proposed entrance to the multi-storey car park. This conjunction of traffic and play area is potentially unsafe.

We would ask the applicant to give consideration to either removing the car park from its plan or moving it to the western end of the site adjacent to the M11, where fewer people live, and from there, if necessary, run visitors round the site on electric buggies. If that is not possible, the applicant should accept that it is responsible for the traffic generated by the West Cambridge site development and arrange for access/egress to the car park and to the buildings at the eastern end of the site to be directed via JJ Thompson Road, rather than utilising CMR as its service road. In essence, the plan brings traffic from the M11 and A428 further down Madingley Road and into the city than is necessary and is an imposition on local residents and contrary to the public policy of encouraging cycling, walking and the use of public transport.

 

Description

Case by the Applicant / Agent

Paul Milliner (Manger of the Planning Division, Estates Division, University of Cambridge) made the following points:

  i.  The West Cambridge Site was a key national and international centre for academic research and commercialisation of knowledge through entrepreneurship and collaboration between University and Industry.

  ii.  The most recently approved local plan supported a new vision for the site.

  iii.  Transforming the physical and social environment for users and the local community would sustain a high-quality site.

  iv.  Residents had continually been informed of the proposal, and their views considered throughout, along with the technical input received from council officers to help shape the application.

  v.  It was unfortunate that the application had taken so long; uncertainty over the Greater Cambridge Partnership Cambourne to Cambridge mass transit project had made it difficult for all parties to assess the application and determine the submission from a transport perspective.

  vi.  Had sought to resolve other areas of residents’ concern with regular contact throughout the application (with 2020 being the exception) to engage and explain how and why decisions had been made.

 vii.  Since the application was originally submitted changes had been made to the application in respect of its relationship with Clerk Maxwell Road; significant reduction in parameter heights, with a reduction in the size of the Multi-Storey Car Park from 640 spaces, to 540 spaces, now 450 car parking spaces.

viii.  Other changes had been made to accommodate residents’ concerns:

·  Removal of a servicing point from the southern end of Clerk Maxwell Road.

·  A woodland management plan for the vegetation along the site boundaries to improve the green buffer

·  Proposed dedicated cycle lanes along both sides of Clerk Maxwell Road linking the Coton footpath and cycle path with Madingley Road; remove the uncontrolled car parking on Clerk Maxwell Road

  ix.  The University would continue to engage with local people.

 

Mark Parsons (Planning Manager, Estate Division University of Cambridge) said the following in response to the points raised in the petition.

  i.  Concern from local people is that the multi storey car park (MSCP) conflicted with Policy 80 of the Cambridge Local Plan.

  ii.  Although the MSCP was a key strand of the wider application the University was focused to capture softer modes of transport for employees. The application was less focused on private vehicles, encouraging people to walk and cycle. The University in its analysis concluded the site was not currently conducive to this.

  iii.  One of the aims was to encourage all the community to walk and cycle through the site and to look and interact with the buildings; it needed to feel less institutionalised.

  iv.  New cycleways, better pavements, and reduction of the need for cars to drive around the site would improve the site secured through Section 106 funding. The aims of Policy 80 would be more than achieved.

  v.  Policy 80 stated while prioritising more sustainable modes of travel the site must be accessible for all. There must be a balance, while prioritising softer modes the site must cater for car users who travel to work, therefore parking provision on the site was necessary.  

  vi.  While setting an upper limit of car parking spaces through the application there was a mutual aspiration that this limit of car parking could be reduced or removed in the future.

 vii.  A concern raised was the MSCP was in an inappropriate location, out of keeping aesthetically with its surroundings. The location was part of an overall network of MSCPs across the site intended to keep the car parking at the peripheries to help prioritise walking, cycling, and create new open spaces.

viii.  The majority of the MSCPs were to the west of the site, which complemented the more commercial uses to the western side of the development with the proportion of people arriving by private car likely to be higher.

  ix.  However, to cater for all employees across the site, parking at the eastern end was necessary, the location of which is currently the site for 275 car parking spaces.

  x.  The three-character areas within the Madingley Road, Cambridge Suburbs and Approaches Study (2009) noted the varied character of residential properties, College building and grounds, academic and commercial buildings, the Observatory and Park and Ride

  xi.  The adjacency to the Conservation Area did not in itself make the site undevelopable or the proposal unacceptable, a point noted by the Conservation Team who had no objection to the current application.

 xii.  Page 25 of the Design Guide document set out the aims and objectives to make any MSCP exceed the 'norm' of the perceived traditional MSCPs look. Variations to roofline, breaking up frontages, celebration of cores and access points, projections and planting are all detailed. Engagement with officers and residents throughout the design process would achieve a high design standard.

 

Feeder Lane and backing up of vehicles

xiii.  Residents had expressed concerned about the backing up of cars waiting to enter the site on Madingley Road.

xiv.  An existing entrance into the site was being used; the net difference in parking spaces would be around 170 spaces. The provision of new cycle lanes on Clerk Maxwell Road would remove the car parking for 95 spaces along the whole length of Clerk Maxwell Road, the net difference of cars coming onto Clerk Maxwell Road would be 75.

xv.  Parking on this part of the site would be for University staff and employees, University staff within academic departments tended to have flatter/slightly working hours than a traditional 9-5 job, creating a shorter sharper peak.

xvi.  It had been highlighted that the County Council had not said there was a need for a feeder lane into the development, even when the larger car parks were proposed. There was no evidence in the modelling to show the stacking back of cars, and nothing to indicate a problem would impact Clerk Maxwell Road or even Madingley Road.

xvii.  The barrier into the development was set back from Clerk Maxwell Road, it may be that a barrier into the site was not required, control would be at the entrance to the MSCP, it would be far more inviting for cyclists and pedestrians to enter the site at this point.

 

Cocks and Hens Planning Approval

xviii.  Residents had raised issues between the approved Cocks and Hens development and the existing access point. This extant application had been considered and any concerns should have been identified when that application was being assessed.

xix.  The current status quo allowed for a daily flow of circa 190 car movements per day from people wanting to park their car in Clerk Maxwell Road (excluding residents and those cars who cannot find a space and look elsewhere). The uncontrolled row of parked cars created blind spots and hazards.

xx.  In the future situation the only traffic passing the development would be residents, familiar with the area and the existence of the open space. The environment created by the removal of parked cars and the addition of the cycle lanes and the woodland management plan would be far more pleasant.

xxi.  All vehicular traffic associated with the West Cambridge Site would be cut off 55 metres north of the Cocks and Hens site; any fear of pollution or safety was removed. The proposal improved the experience of travelling along and within Clerk Maxwell Road.

 

Final Points

xxii.  The applicant had worked with residents' comments, and had moved parking spaces further west on the site reducing the size of the car park on the North Eastern corner.

xxiii.  The applicant had been continually challenged to improve the amount and quality of public open space on the site, to change the perception of West Cambridge to be more welcoming, increase placemaking and encourage cycling and walking around the site.

xxiv.  Access to the MSCP from JJ Thomas Avenue would run a road through the proposed open space plaza as part of the interconnecting open space network.

xxv.  On balance the application, with the recent changes should be considered as being policy compliant and would allow a change in the quality of the environment on the West Cambridge Site.

 

Case by the Petitioner

  i.  Would argue that access to the eastern side of the site should not be from Clerk Maxwell Road, and that the proposed location of the MSCP was inappropriate.

  ii.  Request that conditions be applied to any approval in respect of at least two designated reserved matters, access, and layout.

  iii.  Clerk Maxwell Road had been intended to link Madingley Road to Barton Road. But had become a quiet feeder road to 25 houses. As the West Cambridge site developed demand for parking had grown. Clerk Maxwell Road had become a resource for the site.

  iv.  Residents had known of visitors to the site who had been given instructions by University departments to park on neighbouring roads.

  v.  The main east/west cycling and pedestrian green link exited out onto Clerk Maxwell Road midway down the road and was already busy; it would become busier once the current access point at the corner of Clerk Maxwell Road and the Coton Footpath closed.

  vi.  At the northern end of Clerk Maxwell Road, the access to the current park and cycle has been proposed as the entrance and exit for the MSCP. All service vehicles to the eastern end of the site were also expected to use this access point. This would generate a significant increase in traffic volumes using the road.

 vii.  The Design and Access Statement showed the building hidden behind a mass of foliage but in winter this would not be the case.

viii.  The application went against policy 55 of the Local Plan.

  ix.  Development was approved in 2020 just across the road from the car park, and by 2023 would more than double residential traffic in Clerk Maxwell Road.

  x.  There would be an open play area for children at its entrance which may have safety and pollution implications for the car park’s access point.

  xi.  Cambridge Zero, a new initiative from the University to minimise carbon usage would “help us deliver a better, healthier zero-carbon future”. But the car park was placed as far away from the M11 and A428, close to the houses while remaining on the site.

 xii.  Bringing traffic further down Madingley Road had potentially serious implications for congestion and air quality, and against both Cambridge Zero and the City Council’s Climate Change Strategy.

xiii.  Supported the Revised Transport Assessment which identified the four main roads on the West Cambridge site (JJ Thomson Avenue, Charles Babbage Road,  High Cross Road and the Western Access Road) to be used as the principal means for movement to and across the site. Maximising the use of the West Cambridge infrastructure whilst minimising the use of public roads.

xiv.  Contend that early access to the site from the M11 end should be encouraged, the only Madingley Road junction predicted not to fail in 2031 from the significantly increased traffic predicted was the Western Perimeter junction closest to M11.

xv.  The detailed proposal introduces using a residential road as the main access to service the buildings in the Eastern section of the site as well as to access the first multi-storey car park proposed to be built.

xvi.  The Transport and Travel plans has raised numerous questions. Focusing solely on the final 2031 position and quoting only the morning figures the following should be noted:

·  Residents carried out a traffic survey in January 2020 and showed substantially more movement on Clerk Maxwell Road prior to 8am, the starting time for this survey.

·  Peak inflows of 1,173, 993 and 965 are forecast for three entry points (more than 3,000 in total); would question if it were worth using a residential street for an additional 138 movements. It should also be noted that even with these low forecast volumes the Clerk Maxwell Road junction fails to operate.

xvii.  The JJ Thomson entrance had been designed as a major access point with space and capacity for traffic especially for larger lorries. In comparison Clerk Maxwell Road had a significantly smaller filter lane that serviced a Northbound entry to another University site opposite.

xviii.  The Greater Cambridge Partnership proposed changes to these junctions to improve cycling routes. The proposal showed the JJ Thomson entrance designed for major traffic flows with major filter lanes and significant vehicle reservoirs. In comparison, the options for Clerk Maxwell Road junction were as follows:

·  Retain the small, shared filter lane but with site traffic now crossing a new cycle lane.

·  The filter lane being removed resulting in congestion from vehicles turning into Clerk Maxwell Road.  Would question if this junction were safe with lorries greater than 7.5 tonnes using the route daily.

xix.  Access planned from Clerk Maxwell Road on the eastern part of the site could be replaced with access from JJ Thomson Avenue.  The applicant states this would compromise the East Green link and would have an adverse impact on the public realm within this part of the site. This did not show the same concern for the neighbourhood and specifically Clerk Maxwell Road and asked the applicant to reconsider.

xx.  The minutes of a community meeting on the Whittle extension detailed the University’s leader for the North West development project state that technically a road from JJ Thomas could access the car park through the site.

xxi.  Cambridge City Council planning officer stated that the upcoming Whittle extension should not prejudice an East/West route. Therefore, an agreement that access from JJ Thomas is feasible

xxii.  Believed the current site with the planned ‘Eastern Green link’, and a north/south cycle and pedestrian route was what the applicant wished to protect.

xxiii.  Proposed a road from JJ Thomas to service the eastern part of site; that most of this is already proposed as a route by the university. This proposed service road from JJ Thomas has little or no impact on the greenway. Almost all this route was already surfaced road with a car park.

xxiv.  This route has a left turn off JJ Thomas, rather than a right turn off Clerk Maxwell Road, so there would be no tail back to Madingley Road as there is an adequate vehicle reservoir on the approach to the car park which keeps traffic on site instead of on neighbouring roads.

xxv.  The proposed car park, assuming a standard design of split-level car park the height would be about 11m. From Madingley Road just 15m away this would dominate the view on the approach to site from Cambridge.

xxvi.  The proposed car park would dominate the view on the North East corner of the site and would be way above the current building skyline behind the trees but clearly visible during winter months.

xxvii.  Suggested 2 alternative multi-storey car park locations, one on the west edge and one on the east. The one in the North East could be postponed until such time it was proved to be necessary.

xxviii.  Car parking on the west side of site made sense for many reasons; it was away from residential areas, near the M11 motorway and the A428, it would take traffic off Madingley Road and provide a partial sound barrier for the site

xxix.  On the site to the north of the data centre there was a planned car park. A car park with 2200 bays could be built, this would satisfy half of the required parking for the site and perhaps 100% if car-journey-reducing strategies were successfully introduced.

xxx.  This car park would be distant from the engineering departments on the east edge of site, but people movement could be easily accommodated with local on-site transportation. This could include cycling, a possible park and cycle scheme, electric scooters, and hover boards in the future.

xxxi.  Soon autonomous vehicles could be feasible to move people around the site as promoted by the ‘Cambridge Zero’ project.

xxxii.  In conclusion, site traffic should be kept on site, access to the east of site could be achieved via JJ Thomas avenue and cars parks could and should be located to the west of site for many reasons.

Case Officer Comments

  i.  The application was originally submitted in June 2016. A revised application then submitted in September 2017 in response to consultees’ comments. Further revised documents were submitted in October 2020 in response to consultees and neighbours’ comments during the consultation period.

  ii.  Each submission had been followed by a public consultation period.

  iii.  An Officer assessment was being undertaken and the application would be reported to the Planning Committee in due course.

  iv.  A significant number of representations had been received during the three consultation periods. Residents were largely represented by Resident Associations, although approximately 25 individuals had responded. Sometimes residents responded more than once to each consultation.

  v.  A broad summary of the consultation responses was as follows (full responses could be found on the City Council’s website:

  i.  Scale, height, massing and density of the scheme and impact of neighbouring visual amenity.

  ii.  The proposed buildings would detrimentally affect the evening sunlight of the gardens of houses in Perry Court due to their height and proximity to Clerk Maxwell Road. Although some of the existing trees along the western edge of Clerk Maxwell Road restricted some evening light, the additional height and solid nature of the proposed building would result in a severe detrimental reduction.

  iii.  The height of the flues above the building was considered excessive.

  iv.  The proposed buildings due to location and height would overlook the nearest houses and gardens of Perry Court and the Lawns and result in a loss of privacy.

  v.  Considered the MSCP to be inappropriately located on a residential road on the edge of a conservation area opposite a new development of 35 houses. This would result in a flow of traffic conflicting with the proposed pedestrian and cycle paths on Madingley Road and Clerk Maxwell Road.

  vi.  The MSCP was located to the nearest point of the city rather than nearer the M11 which conflicted with the aim of reducing traffic flow towards the city.

  vii.  The MSCP should be located nearer to the M11 boundary of the site.

  viii.  The forecast flow of up to 450 cars daily into the MSCP plus delivery vehicles would be dangerous for other users of Clerk Maxwell Road. There would also be an increase in pollution and noise. It was inappropriate to divert this traffic from the site to a neighbouring residential road.

  vi.  A joint letter from City Councillors Matthews, Gehring and County Councillor Nethsingha support the response from the Clerk Maxwell Residents Association and drew attention to the following concerns:

·  The number of documents and complexity of the application that residents must consider.

·  The height and the impact on the buildings on the eastern edge of the site and the shade they would cast.

·  The construction of the MSCP on the corner of Clerk Maxwell Road and Maddingly Road and the increased pollution this would bring.

·  The plan to use Clerk Maxwell Road as a service road.

 vii.  The County Council (Highways Authority) comments are summarised as follows:

·  There were outstanding issues regarding the transport assessment and until the information had been provided and agreed they were unable to state whether the development would be acceptable in highway terms.

viii.  Highways England raised a concern that the revised transport assessment had not been submitted and a holding objection was submitted until April 2021. Highways England had since been advised that a revised assessment had been received and was awaiting a response.

  ix.  The Lead Local Flood Authority had considered the revised information and required an addendum or update to the flood risk assessment, this still outstanding.

  x.  No objections had been received from Natural England.

  xi.  The Fire and Rescue Service had raised no objections subject to a Section 106 agreement regarding fire provision on the site.

 xii.  The Adams Road Bird Sanctuary objected to the application until the highlighted errors in the recent submission had been addressed.

xiii.  Environmental Health had provided a holding response pending the submission of further information requested from the applicant.

xiv.  Historic England had said their views were that of the City Council’s Conservation Officer’s and had no objection on heritage grounds.

xv.  The following raised no objections or supported the application: the Access Officer, the Sustainable Drainage Officer, the Nature Conservation Officer, Historic England, Environment Agency, Sport England, Cambridge Water, Anglia Water and Cambridgeshire County Council Archaeology.

xvi.  Responses were still being received from the latest round of consultations. 

 

 

Case by Ward Councillor

City Councillor Matthews spoke as a Ward Councillor and made the following points:

  i.  Supported the petitioner’s recommendation that the car park should be developed last.

  ii.  Questioned what detailed modelling had been done regarding the access through JJ Thomson Road and Clerk Maxwell Road; the petitioners had shown access was possible and took up a small proportion of development.

  iii.  Asked where the car park was in terms of design stage and what type of design and materials had been chosen.

 

County Councillor Nethsingha said the following:

  i.  The outline plan was likely to take many years to complete.

  ii.  Thanked the University for their consultation with residents and acknowledged there had been changes made due to this engagement.

  iii.  Transport was a major issue with the whole of the city.

  iv.  At present there was a 275-space car park on site and parking on Clerk Maxwell Road. In normal times parking on Clerk Maxwell Road was full but the car park was very rarely full.

  v.  With the potential increase in the use of the Clerk Maxwell junction it was important to be aware the car park currently on that site was underutilised.

  vi.  Queried if there had been any consideration to the Madingley Park and Ride site. There were plans to relocate the park and ride. This would mean that parking could be provided from this location close the application, reducing the volume of traffic coming further down Cromwell Road.

 vii.  Long term context of the outline plan was important as this would be a plan which could run for the next ten to twenty years. Over this period, it was hoped that dependency on private cars would significantly reduce.

viii.  Welcomed the applicant’s comment that they would not install the multi storey car park if it was not required. Needed to be clear in the plans that this car park would be built last as it may not be required.

  i.  Noted that the County Council as the transport authority had not yet responded and neither had the Environment Agency.

  ii.  There were flooding issues in the area and required reassurance that the Environment Agency were happy with the water management proposals with clear strategies how this would be managed.

  iii.  Residents had experienced water management issues during construction in this area with pollution of local streams. The main watercourse off the site runs under Wilberforce Road (which was prone to flooding) into the nature reserve.

 

Members’ Questions and Comments:

In response to Members comments the Applicant responded with the following:

  i.  Saw the MSCP as the last rung of the ladder of the transport story.

  ii.  Anticipated a car parking strategy on the site which would be done in a phased way. It was not the aim to provide too much parking at any one time.

  iii.  If the MSCP was not required, it would not be built but the application showed worst case scenario.

  iv.  Noted the request for car sharing priority.

  v.  The ground floor of the car park would be considered for cycle parking.

  vi.  Noted the comments for future conversion of the MSCP if parking was not required such as educational purposes.

 vii.  The application in its entirety provided significant infrastructure for softer modes of travel; stringent travel plans would be in place including site access.

viii.  Enhanced public transport would be secured by a Section 106 agreement; there were also significant contributions and physical schemes being proposed to improve cycling and walking outside of the site in the west of Cambridge.

  ix.  Committed contributions towards the strategic mass transit Cambourne to Cambridge scheme which would unlock the potential to unlock sustainable transport patterns.

  x.  Had committed to the Local Plan standard to provide EV charging points in the MSCP.

  xi.  Understood the densification of the site would lead people to think there would be an increase in traffic but the Local Plan showed a demand for employment, teaching and learning and believed this site made best use to meet that demand in a sustainable location. 

 xii.  If densification were not on this site, the demand would be met elsewhere which might not be in such a sustainable location.

xiii.  Any design for the MSCP would come through a reserved matters application, currently no design was proposed.

xiv.  Acknowledged there were underutilised car parking spaces on site but the car park could be used to its full capacity.

xv.  The Park and Ride site was leased to the County Council with the University of Cambridge as the freeholder; could not rely on this as part of the parking strategy for west Cambridge in the short term.

xvi.  Believed an alternative access from JJ Thomson Avenue would compromise the aims of the Master Plan and proposals would not affect the amenity of residents on Clark Maxwell Road.

xvii.  Local transport policy 120, there was a need to prioritise cyclist particularly down Clerk Maxwell Road. Consultants had advised that the routes would be safe for cyclists; consultations comments would be brought back from various agencies through the planning process.

xviii.  Transport assessments had considered approved development and the future increase in cycle users using the Clerk Maxwell junction. 

xix.  Would focus on the physical measures to enhance the access to the city centre which would encourage softer modes of transport such was walking and cycling. 

xx.  The overall aim was to make West Cambridge a more welcoming place for the wider community, a place where people would want to visit and be used by residents and the public.

xxi.  A comprehensive flood risk and drainage assessment had been submitted with the application. County and City Officers had asked that current legislation was crossed checked which would be resubmitted as this had been done; the strategy met with the current requirements.

 

Summing up by the Agent.

  i.  Welcomed the opportunity to discuss this strategically important site with Members throughout the planning process. 

  ii.  Throughout the process had listened to several interested parties, council officers, statutory consultees and residents which had helped shape the application.

  iii.  A balance had to be struck for an optimal solution which was policy compliment across the site.

  iv.  Acknowledged the issue of parking was a high concern on resident’s agenda and there had to be a balance, too much parking would encourage unsustainable traffic patterns but not enough would result in overflow parking and would fail to meet the future use of the site.

  v.  No objection to the carpark on technical or safety grounds had been made by the Highways Authority.

  vi.  The location and access points for the car park allow the placemaking objectives to flourish, enhanced cycling, walking and community cohesion across the site.

 vii.  The removal of the uncontrolled parking on Clerk Maxwell Road and other improvements to cycle infrastructure would enable this enhancement to extend beyond the site boundary. 

viii.  Recognised the final design of any structure needed to be well considered and respond to the site constraints.

  ix.  Would expect any design to be of high quality, and meet the standards set by the City Council and the Cambridgeshire Quality Panel. The Council would have full control over that final design at the reserved matters stage.

  x.  Over the course of the application changes had been made in response to objections from residents.

  xi.  Would continue to work with officers to resolve the final few issues to enable the application to come before the Planning Committee for determination.

 

Summing up by the Petitioners:

  i.  Emphasised that residents were not opposed to the development, but the plan needed to be improved.

  ii.  Many comments had centred around the car park, but access to the site was just as important.

  iii.  Regarding the Clerk Maxwell junction from Maddingly Road, there had been no mention of the expected 70 deliveries a day of which 2 flows would be from lorries over 7.5 tonnes.

  iv.  A rise from about 3,000 to 15,000 in the number of people on the site would result in an increase in car journeys. Parking and access were key but could be managed more considerately and effectively.

  v.  The application would be responsible for the rise in vehicular and cycling traffic. Increases in road use, congestion, noise, and pollution were all consequences of this growth.

  vi.  The planning documents stated the applicant wished to be a good neighbour. To achieve that aim, it was incumbent to ensure plans minimised any adverse effect on its surroundings. Prioritising protection of the public realm within the site at the expense of the public realm outside the site was doing the opposite.

 vii.  Whatever traffic flow data presented; a casual observer would be justified in assuming the avenues on the site had more capacity to absorb additional volume than Clerk Maxwell Road.

viii.  Clerk Maxwell Road faced doubling in residential traffic in two years and a surge in cycling to and from both the site and Eddington. It had little space for cars to queue into a car park, and the entrance was too close to the Madingley Road junction.

  ix.  The whole set-up was unsuited for daily visits from 7.5 tonne lorries, despite there being no inherent need for either service vehicles or visitors to use Clerk Maxwell Road at all.

  x.  Believed the Design and Access Statement utilised Clerk Maxwell Road as it was more important to preserve the site’s environmental quality and minimise the risk of conflict between service vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists on the site. 

  xi.  The application did not take into consideration the environmental quality and risk of conflict on this road and Madingley Road.

 xii.  Alternatives to the proposals without requiring a wholesale redrawing of the site plans were as follows:

·  Locate much of the parking near the M11.

·  Use electric autonomous vehicles.

·  Delay the building of this car park pending a decision over transport needs in 2031.

·  Keep the existing service road from JJ Thomson Avenue.

xiii.  In response to the University’s list of issues:

·  The removed access point to the south of Clerk Maxwell Road the University had reserved the right to reinstate this under a separate planning application should it feel it necessary.

·  Although there had been a reduction in size of the car park, the traffic flow had been ignored. There would not be just 450 cars in and 450 cars out.

·  Reduction in building heights – that is questionable and subject to a separate detailed submission from the Residents’ Association on the OPA.

·  Cycle lanes down either side of Clerk Maxwell Road were welcomed but would leave a single lane down the centre of Road causing congestion near the car park entrance.

xiv.  Pleas to consider the residents had largely been ignored. 

 xv.  The University should recognise it had the means to achieve a satisfactory compromise without tearing up all its plans, and acknowledge there was no virtue in preserving acres of pristine tarmac decorated with double yellow lines while neighbouring roads seize up under the pressure. If Cambridge Zero is to mean anything, there must be a rethink.

 

Final Comments of the Chair

The Chair observed the following:

·  Notes of the Development Control Forum would be made available to relevant parties.

·  The planning case officer should contact the applicants/agent after the meeting to discuss the outcome of the meeting and to follow up any further action that is necessary. The applicant will be encouraged to keep in direct contact with the petitioners and to seek their views on any proposed amendment/s.

·  The Council will follow its normal neighbour notification procedures on any amendments to the application.

·  Along with other individuals who may have made representations on the application, the petitioners’ representatives will be informed of the date of the meeting at which the application is to be considered by Committee and of their public speaking rights. The Committee report will be publicly available five clear days before the Committee meeting.