Combined Authority Mayor James Palmer has shocked Coton residents by insisting that the route for his proposed metro must go through the village. As recently as August the Mayor had assured Coton Parish Councillors that an off road route through Coton would not happen. Previously he had denied that plans for a metro implied his support for such a route.
Liberal Democrat District Councillor Ian Sollom said "the Mayor has let Coton residents down badly with this u-turn. He has made much of the fact that the Greater Cambridge Partnership can only deliver transport infrastructure he approves, but now he is driving his metro straight through the village."
The Mayor announced his plans to stunned Parish Councillors at a meeting last week.
Since May, the Greater Cambridge Partnership (GCP) and the Mayor’s Combined Authority have been working to ensure that all GCP transport projects align with the Mayor's wider transport strategy. The GCP’s projects must fit within that strategy. Projects were paused while the work took place, but Cambourne to Cambridge was the only project to remain paused when others resumed in August.
It was understood that the Mayor had given his consultants, Arup, remit to look at a broader range of options for Cambourne to Cambridge, including routes via the Girton interchange. But the Mayor did not share his findings with the GCP or local members before dropping his bombshell.
The Liberal Democrats are demanding the immediate release of the Arup report so that its findings can be scrutinised by all parties. Ian Sollom said "we are seeking a truly independent and transparent report of the options that fully analyses the issues raised by local residents.”
He continued "residents put their trust in the Mayor, but that trust has been sadly misplaced. We will continue to challenge the Mayor to make his case for a metro route through Coton.”