Tackling congestion

We are working with local councils, businesses, university researchers and other partners to find smart ways to tackle challenges such as transport and air quality.

New housing and business activity will inevitably bring new residents and workers to Cambridge, which will lead to more vehicles. As part of our commitment to reduce our carbon footprint we face a continuing challenge to prevent any deterioration in air quality resulting from this.

A study in 2015 found that 87,000 cars drove into Cambridge on most weekdays. We need to find effective ways to manage congestion, especially at peak times for journeys in and out of the city. This will help us improve the environment for residents, workers and visitors.

Air pollution is one of the 20 leading risk factors for disease. It has been estimated that over 5% of deaths in Cambridgeshire can be attributed to air pollution. Read Cambridgeshire Insight’s transport and health joint strategic needs assessment for more detail.

Switching from driving to walking, cycling or using public transport can have a beneficial impact on an individual’s health. Corresponding decreases in overall air pollution levels can also have a wider benefit to the population’s health.

Nitrogen dioxide is routinely monitored across the city. Like in most cities, the high levels are caused primarily (but not solely) by traffic pollution. It is estimated that around 75% of oxides of nitrogen are emitted from motor vehicle exhausts in urban areas.

Find out more on the Greater Cambridge Partnership website or read Connecting Cambridgeshire’s smart Cambridge brochure [PDF].

Parking tariff changes

We will be trialling a peak-time parking tariff at our five multi-storey car parks for 12 months from April 2018.

Parking between 8 and 10am on weekdays will cost an additional 50p per hour for every hour (or part hour) of your stay.

This tariff is designed to encourage people to use alternative methods of transport to come into Cambridge. It also aims to encourage visiting at less busy periods of the day.

We also recognise the potential for extra congestion being generated by people taking advantage of cheaper parking rates after 5pm. To discourage this we will be returning to a 6pm start for this element of our tariff.

These changes will follow the installation of new car parking payment machines at the car parks.

We will also be implementing a 30% increase to the cost of season tickets for business users. This increase is to encourage the use of cleaner forms of transport that will not cause so much congestion.

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