Works to create a new raised lanes on Hills Road between Cherry Hinton Road and Long Road are now largely complete.
Works will begin on the out-bound side of Hills Road soon. Two sets of traffic management will be used in order to progress the works more quickly. The new cycleways will be completed in Summer 2017.
Hills Road Route User Incept Surveys
Since completing Phase 1, Route User Incept Surveys (RUIS) have been completed for both Hills Road and Huntingdon Road cycleways to see what impact the new cycleways has had on the number of cyclists using the road.
On the Hills Road RUIS Report which was completed in December 2016 the manual count data tables are divided into two sections: the path (survey location) covers cyclists on the road and on the raised cycle lanes and the additional count is the number of cyclists on the footways on both sides of the road. Please note that the counts cover both directions.
The map below shows the location of the improvements in green.
Raised Cycle Lanes
The level of the 2.3m cycle lanes would be raised up so cyclists are above the normal road height but below the height of the pavement. The raised cycleway option would allow emergency vehicles to pass more easily than the kerbed segregation option. This option would also be less visually intrusive than the kerbed segregated option. No right turn lanes would be lost or narrowed, and existing pedestrian refuges would be retained, as would the existing widths of verge and footway in most cases.
Floating Bus Stops
A new type of bus stop is included in the proposals. The cycle lane runs behind the bus stop allowing cyclists to continue their journey even when buses are stationary. The cycle lane narrows to 1.5m through the bus stop to slow cyclists down and there is a crossing place for pedestrians.
The developed proposals address concerns over island or floating bus stops through the detail of the design.
All of the bus stop islands will be at least 2 metres in width and all waiting facilities (flag, timetable, shelter, seats and real time passenger information) will be sited on the island. This avoids the situation where boarding passengers have to cross the cycleway as the bus arrives at the stop and it also provides ample space for passengers, including wheelchair users, to get off the bus before crossing the cycleway.
The cycleway will be clearly defined through the stop by kerbs and red surfacing except at the designated crossing point, where the cycleway will rise up to give a level crossing point. Tactile paving will mark the crossing point together with a black tarmac footway crossing, to highlight the crossing point to all users and assist visually impaired pedestrians.
As the cycle lane approaches the bus stop it will deviate to the left and narrow to 1.5 metres in width, there will then be a short ramp up to the level pedestrian crossing point. The deviation, narrowing, ramp and change in surface type will all serve to alert cyclists to the need to be mindful of pedestrians, in addition to the presence of the bus stop itself, and cyclists and pedestrians will have full visibility of one another when approaching the stop.
In Autumn 2015 the County Council commissioned Sustrans to monitor the use of two floating bus stops, one on Huntingdon Road and one on Hills Road, and the interactions between users. The bus stops have been in place for over a year, and are designed to make cycling safer by reducing conflict between cyclists and motor vehicles.
Why are we doing this now?
Continuing expansion of the Addenbrooke’s site, the station area (CB1) and other developments to the south of the city will increase traffic on Hills Rd. We need good cycleways around this area if we are to keep Cambridge moving as our population increases.
More people cycle to work in Cambridge than in any other city in the UK and we recognise that among its many benefits, cycling is vital in reducing congestion, boosting the local economy and improving health.
Our innovative plans are similar to schemes which have already been operating successfully in London, Brighton and parts of Europe, where they have received overwhelmingly positive feedback from users, and cycling, particularly amongst children, has substantially increased.
How are we funding this?
The improvements will cost around £1.2m and are funded by the County Council’s successful bid in securing £4.1 million from the Department for Transport’s Cycle City Ambition Fund.
The aim of the Cycle City Ambition Fund is to provide separate cycle lanes on the main roads into Cambridge and to create good quality cycleways to employment areas in South Cambridgeshire.
Consultation took place in March 2014 on traffic improvements for Hills Road in Cambridge.
The scheme was approved by Council Committee in Summer 2014. Details are available in the minutes of the Economy and Environment Committee from 8 July 2014