Mere Way consultation1How do you use Mere Way2Waterbeach to Landbeach3Landbeach4Mere Way5To the Science Park6Design principles and details7Heritage8Working with Nature9Planning to delivery10Next steps Which email address should we use if we need to contact you? How you currently use Mere Way Walking Running Cycling Horse Riding I don't use the route but I'm interested in the work What is the main purpose for using Mere Way Leisure Commuting In the next steps you'll see details on the different sections of the route and be able to leave comments on each section. Waterbeach to Landbeach This section will see a cycle and pedestrian bridge take cyclists over the A10. The new bridge will be an important landmark at the gateway to the Waterbeach Barracks development. Therefore, the detailed design of the bridge will be subject to a separate, focused consultation. The route will then cross a field using a 3m wide shared footpath/cycleway – with 1m wide verge either side. The route follows a historic field boundary. This will then connect to Green End via the existing Hilton Farm access track. New cycle gates will be added which will have a 1.5 gap in the middle to allow cycles to pass. As the track meets the Pavement at the corner with Green End, a new Shared Use cycleway/footpath will be installed, turning south along Green End. All Private accesses will be respected and have been designed into the plan to avoid conflict between cyclists and residents leaving their homes by car, bike or on foot. Most of the street infrastructure will be retained in position, but one telegraph pole will need to be moved slightly at the corner of the track and Green End. As the new shared cycle and footway goes along Green End, the 3m width will be 1.5m of tarmac and 1.5 m of grass. The route will be two way. Your comment Landbeach The route continues adjacent to Green End continuing south until just passed Beach Farm. It then crosses the road. This enables a safer route to connect to the ongoing cycle way along Spaldings Lane and to avoid the busy corner along Green End. The route at this stage continues as 2.5m wide along Green End, and turns onto Spaldings Lane, through a remodelled junction. The new junction layout has been designed to make the existing layout safer and includes: Narrowing the bellmouth of the junction, to ensure vehicles navigate it more consistently Adding in some landscape features to support the narrowing and make it clearer where cars and bikes should go, differentiating the cycle lane from the rest of the junction layout. This will not impact on the space in front of homes in this location, and will use space from the junction to create the new layout. The route continues along Spaldings Lane – where hedgerows will be cut back to improve the width of the carriageway and sight lines. The route then turns right into Cockfen Road, passing Worts Meadow Scheduled Ancient Monument. The works would include some repair and improvement work to key areas along the road and vegetation to widen the carriageway. As the route passes the corner and turns into Akeman Street, a new surface will be laid – in line with Cambridgeshire County Council guidance on cycleway surfacing. The route then continues at a width of 4m wide down Akeman Street until it turns into Mere Way. This is not only to widen the route for cyclists but to ensure a robust surface and appropriate space for the agricultural vehicles using this area. The 1m grass verge for horses is maintained each side of the 4m surfaced space. Your comment Mere Way The route along Mere Way follows the line of the ancient Byway, upgrading and widening the evened out surfaces to be 4m along most of the length of the route. Upgrades include: Providing a level and smooth surface with grass verges a concrete lipping to the route to stop grass incursion 1m wide verges on either side to ensure equestrian use is maintained, and to provide options for walkers wishing to use the grass route. Maintenance of the hedgerow in key areas to ensure visibility is clear, ensuring the retention of all larger trees along the route. Clear access points maintaining the field and rights of way connections along the route. The route includes a number of locations where “junctions” have been designed to ensure safe interaction with farm vehicles using this route. These focus on: Layouts which slow people from each direction Increased visibility through management of the hedgerows Signage to warn of other route users These approaches have been developed with the key farm businesses along the route. As you approach the junction with Butt Lane, the route includes a cycle, pedestrian and horse-friendly gate, which will help to ensure no vehicles can use the routes, except those accessing the farms. The route continues south of Butt Lane with 4m width, narrowing to 3m in the final run into the north of Cambridge as the wooded areas to the side of the route increase. It is not felt appropriate to remove the ecologically-rich hedgeing and young woodland here, and so while the route slims slightly to the standard width of 3m, it maintains its grass verge throughout. Your comment To the Science Park The route turns into the road which goes under the A14 and connects up to existing routes into Science Park and on to Cambridge Regional College. Your comment Design principles and detailsA set of design principles for the route have been agreed with colleagues from Cambridgeshire County Council’s Transport Team. These have been developed through a series of workshops with officers, Camcycle, Waterbeach Cycling Group and local Parish Councils. These design principles are: Where possible the tarmacked 3m wide route will support two way cycling and walking whilst also accommodating other users. Along the existing Mere Way byway, a 1m grass verge will be maintained each side of the tarmacked route to support equestrian use. On the newly designed route through Landbeach a design consistent with the Greenway projects has been used: 1.5 grass route, with 1.5m tarmac surface. The surface material should allow efficient cycling whilst also being robust enough to support the necessary occasional use by agricultural vehicles requiring access to fields in order to service crops. Lighting The current proposals are in line with County Council standards and seek to balance lighting in key locations. Key approaches to fencing, bollards and signage are in line with the County Council standard guidance. Your comment Working with HeritageSustainability has been at the heart of the Vision for Mere Way from day one, in providing low carbon and active options for people to get about and enjoy the landscape around them. The team have started from the point that the designs for this route must minimise the impact on heritage and ecology and provide opportunity to improve both the natural environment and to provide interpretation for some of the unique heritage assets along this route. The section below sets out how the design intends to do this. Celebrating and protecting our heritageMere Way and Akeman Street are historic Rights of Way, and we relish the responsibility of evolving them into sustainable routes for the future. We have been working with Oxford Archaeology and Cambridgeshire County Council to agree an approach which safeguards the heritage and celebrates it as part of the interpretation and promotion of the route. Oxford Archaeology – who have been extensively involved in exploring the heritage of the area over the past few decades – were commissioned to undertake a Heritage Statement for the proposed Waterbeach Mere Way cycle path. This document was produced to aid the planning of the route; identifying any potential archaeological or wider heritage impacts as well as opportunities for enhancement to heritage assets – including the installation of interpretation boards along the route, and/or improved access to heritage assets. Key heritage assetsNote-worthy heritage stories and influences, such as : Mere Way, part of the old Roman Road which connects to Akeman Street and continues in some sections up to the Isle of Ely. Akeman Street is the old Roman road that runs from Cambridgeshire to the north coast of Norfolk and runs approximately 75 miles (120 km) long. It ran from Ermine Street near Wimpole Hall, via Durolipons (now Cambridge), before joining the present A10 towards Ely, Denver and the coast at Brancaster. The road was constructed on top of an earlier trackway which dates from the 2nd Century. Worts Meadow: this area of earthworks indicates archaeological remains from the early medieval period, including the remains of a manorial estate and village. It is one of many historic assets in Landbeach, which has over 17 Listed Buildings in it, alongside this Scheduled Ancient Monument. Tithe Barn: Tithe barns were built in the days when every peasant gave a tenth of their crops to the church, the contributions being stacked in the barn for winter threshing and storage. The Tithe Barn at Landbeach is one of the few still standing, and dating back to the Sixteenth Century tells a unique story, which is now being saved and retold for future generations by the team at the Tithe Barn Trust. Careful construction approaches The proposed construction of the cycle path is expected to involve minimal impact along much of the route. Much of the work will sit within and upon previously developed routes, as through Landbeach and the paved areas of Akeman Street. Where new surfaces are being applied – such as along the fields connecting Waterbeach and Landbeach and along Mere Way – the approach will involve low impact work, including: Levelling the ground to create a solid base for the route Putting in place the concrete edging Laying tarmac to a 30mm depth within the edging Repair work to the grass verge and seeding As the work is taken forward any additional requirements for mitigation will be identified through consultation with the Cambridgeshire Historic Environment Team (CHET). As part of the promotion of the route, the development’s Heritage Group are supporting us to produce a leaflet about the history of the route, and we will explore opportunities for interpretation boards and audio clips in key locations to promote the historic route and the local heritage assets they connect to. Your comment Working with natureDelivery of the route has been designed to ensure a net gain to biodiversity, through a range of measures set out below. To create the width that the route needs to accommodate equestrians, walkers and cyclists, there is an impact on the existing vegetation and the design work has working in the larger trees and more wildlife rich hedgerows to minimise the impact. Where there is tree loss, double the number of trees and woodland area will be planted, including larger trees to create instant impact and ensure a more natural evolving woodland. Linear hedgerow will be replaced but with a stronger species mix to support greater biodiversity. The approach includes: Existing hedges will be buffered and enhanced through planting up gaps and strengthening the hedge structure and species mix. Hedges provide important nesting habitat for birds such as whitethroat and yellowhammer and will also provide sheltered wildlife corridors through the area for key species such as badger and brown hare. New tree planting will be provided along the route and within the retained hedgerows to include a range of native species and mix of age classes. In the new route crossing farmland, an area alongside the route will create a grass and scrub mosaic which work with the field edge to create species-rich grassland areas that support flowering plants, and in turn important invertebrates such as butterflies and moths. Enhanced field margins will also provide a range of habitats for farmland bird species in the area such as yellowhammer, skylark, grey partridge and meadow pipit, providing both foraging and nesting opportunities. The western approach to the bridge crossing the A10 will be designed to minimise potential impacts on existing field boundary features, whilst the earthworks of the bridge landing will be treated as an extension of the grass and scrub mosaic, with additional new native and climate change resilient tree species. Within the Waterbeach Barracks and Airfield site, the eastern approach to the bridge crossing the A10 will form a continuation of the habitat mosaic established for the Mere Way route, which in turn will connect to the wider green infrastructure of the development itself. As the design develops detailed plans will follow to illustrate the hedgerow enhancements, new tree locations/species to be planted and the plant mixes for the species-rich grassland areas.Your comment Planning to delivery The principles of the route we are consulting on were set out in the Outline Planning Application for the development of the former Barracks and Airfield at Waterbeach. The team are now bringing forward detailed designs to turn this approval into delivery. As this route includes areas of existing Highway and areas of new routes being delivered, it will come forward through a couple of different routes. Some will be through a formal planning process – with consultation with key statutory partners and the wider public – and some through Section 278 Highways Agreements* between the County Council and Urban&Civic. The S278 process is a very technical process of design by civil engineers and a series of safety audits, but we are keen to ensure the wider public and partners shape the designs that get formally submitted into that process as much as possible. The map below/to the right shows the different ways in which each route will come forward. Orange: This area requires a Full Planning Application: Waterbeach Barracks to Green End The land required for this section of the Mere Way Shared Use Route is not currently an adopted highway. The plans require a ‘change of use’ from agricultural land. The proposed development represents the delivery of significant infrastructure and so requires a full planning application to be submitted to South Cambridgeshire District Council. A separate full planning application will come forward to include the bridge which will span the A10. Red:Delivered through Section 278 Agreement: Landbeach (Hilton Farm) to Cambridge Science Park (Busway NCN51) The section of Mere Way from Hilton Farm to 1961 Akeman Street (South of Punch Farm) will be subject to works completed within the adopted highway. To the south of this to the Cambridge Science Park (Busway NCN51) the Mere Way route is a byway. Following advice from the Cambridgeshire County Council highway officers it was agreed that the works for the section of the Mere Way Cycle Way from Hilton Farm to the Cambridge Science Park can be delivered through a Section 278 Agreement. Yellow: The Early Phase On-Site Pedestrian-Cycle Routes for Waterbeach Barracks, which Mere Way will lead into will be taken forward as a Reserved Matters Application under Condition 28 of the Outline Application. The boundary for the separate full planning application for Mere Way will finish where the A10 crossing bridge lands on the Waterbeach Barracks site. The immediate landscaping, permanent works around the bridge landing will be secured through a Reserved Matters Application (RMA) pursuant to the Waterbeach Barracks Outline Planning Consent. This application will allow the Mere Way Cycle Way to connect to the wider on-site and off-site movement routes, including the ‘Early Phase On-Site Pedestrian-Cycle Routes’ secured by Condition 28. It is also really important that despite these different technical processes of the work coming forward - that the scheme as a whole is presented to all our local partners and local communities, to help us shape the right approach. On the back of the feedback received here, we will then progress the designs with the planning authorities and once approved start delivery.LANDBEACHFarmCAMBRIDGEWATERBEACHWATERBEACHBARRACKSFarmCambridgeRegional CollegeCambridgeScienceParkCambridgeResearchParkA10Butt LaneGreen EndAkemanStreetMere WayMere WayCockfenLaneMilton RoadDenny End Road Timescales Urban&Civic are committed to installing the Mere Way cycle connection as early as possible within the development and ideally ahead of any residents moving in. This would mean the work being completed by end of 2022. Construction and impact on residents and businesses The application will require a Construction statement, which will set out how this will be delivered safely and in a way which minimises impact on local communities, local businesses and traffic, as well as on nature and heritage. The team are happy to talk through these emerging plans in detail and welcome feedback on key aspects for consideration. Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?How do you feel about the plans?