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Cambridge City Council

Cambridge East Area Action Plan

The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Structure Plan 2003 identifies a number of locations for housing and mixed-use development around Cambridge on land to be released from the green belt.

Land at Cambridge airport, north of Cherry Hinton and north of Newmarket Road has been identified as a location for a major urban extension. The land, known as Cambridge East, has the potential for approximately 10,000 to 12,000 homes. It has been identified in the adopted 2006 Cambridge Local Plan and the South Cambridgeshire Local Development Framework.

The land lies within both city council and South Cambridgeshire District Council areas. To allow for good planning of the area, the two authorities worked together to produce a joint area action plan.

The Cambridge East Area Action Plan process

The key stages towards the adoption of Cambridge East Area Action plan were:

  • October to November 2004: Public participation on preferred options
  • June to July 2005: Pre-submission public participation
  • January to February 2006: Submission of plans to Secretary of State and six-week consultation
  • March to April 2006: Advertisement of objection sites for comment, for six weeks
  • June to July 2006: Six-week consultation on site allocation policy representations
  • July 2007: Public examination
  • November 2007: Binding inspector's report
  • February 2008: Adoption

In October 2004, both authorities carried out public consultation looking at the preferred options for Cambridge East. The results of this process fed into the pre-submission draft Cambridge East Area Action Plan. This was subject to a further six-weeks consultation between 17 June and 29 July 2005.

Following this consultation, the councils prepared the submission draft Cambridge East Area Action Plan. This was submitted to the Secretary of State in January, triggering a further statutory six-week public consultation period.

Consultation on objection sites took place between March and April 2006. Objection sites are additional, alternative or amended sites for development put forward by people objecting to the submission draft. For further information about the objection sites, please view the councils' online consultation system.

Consultation was also undertaken on site allocation policies representations raised in relation to the submission draft Cambridge East Area Action Plan. The consultation period ran from the 16 June to the 28 July 2006. To see further details about this consultation please see the councils' consultation website.

Following on from the submission of the Cambridge East Area Action Plan to the Secretary of State in January 2006, an independent public examination was held. The purpose of the examination was to consider the 'soundness' of the document. The hearing sessions for the Cambridge East Area Action Plan examination began on Tuesday 3 July 2007 and were held in the Guildhall, Market Square, Cambridge.

A final consultation was run to help the inspector review their conclusions on the issue of green separation between Teversham and Fen Ditton. The consultation concerned potential changes to the submission draft area action plan, which would delete the green separation policy and supporting text and make consequential changes to the plan. All public representations made were passed onto the inspector for his consideration.

Supporting documents

The following Cambridge City Council documents helped inform the production of the Cambridge East Area Action Plan:

Other background studies were also undertaken by South Cambridgeshire District Council.

Cambridge East transport study

The Cambridge East Transport Study [PDF, 2.5MB] was commissioned to inform the preparation of the Cambridge East Area Action Plan.

The study looks at the potential transport impact of the proposed development on the transport network and examines ways in which this impact could be managed sustainably. It was used to respond to queries raised by the inspector at the examination of the area action plan.

The study concerns itself with examining ways in which services and facilities can be accessed from the proposed development at Cambridge East.

A master plan for the site has yet to be produced. The study looks only at links from Cambridge East to key destinations, not at the transport layout within the site itself.

It is expected that measures for transport within the site will be taken forward as proposals for the site are developed.

The study does not look at transport issues in the wider area. These are covered by other transport plans and strategies, including the Local Transport Plan, and are being considered through other emerging strategies including the Long Term Transport Strategy.


Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council formally adopted the Cambridge East Area Action Plan on 21 February 2008.

This was following the receipt of the binding Inspector's Report on 20 December 2007, which found the document to be sound.

Further information about the adoption of the Cambridge East Area Action Plan, including the adoption statement, is available on the South Cambridgeshire District Council website.

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