Seven Futures for Cambridge

Cambridge Futures (1) analysed 7 scenarios for the future of Cambridge - as illustrated in the diagram below. The final analysis evaluated each of the options in terms of its economic, social, transport and environmental impacts. 

Just click on one of the images below to see a summary of what the option involves. For a more complete explanation and an analysis of the issues, follow the "analysis" link after the summaries, or use the links in the green column that appears on the left of each page.

The seven scenarios

Option 1 - Minimum Growth

This option explores the idea that Cambridge should do nothing to encourage further the kind of expansion we've seen over the past 50 years, but rather seek to curb it. In order to preserve the City of Cambridge and the surrounding South Cambridgeshire district, all new development would be allocated to market towns in East Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire. Analysis

Option 2 - Densification

This option considers the impact of concentrating as much development as possible in the City of Cambridge where demand for location is highest. Existing private open space and unused land within the urban envelope would be targeted to be developed in a compact form. Analysis

Option 3 - Necklace

This option looks at concentrating development  in the villages (existing or new) and Market Towns beyond the Green Belt in South Cambridgeshire and other districts. This policy represents a continuation of present policies. Analysis

Option 4 - Green Swap

Development would be allowed in selected areas of the Green Belt which are of less scenic value and are not available for public use. Developers would be required to provide equivalent or enhanced amenities for public use further out of town. Analysis

Option 5 - Transport Links

Development would be allowed in areas within easy access of a public transport corridor. It would involve more intensive use of the existing railway lines to London King’s Cross, Liverpool Street, Ely and Newmarket, and the reinstatement of the St Ives/Huntingdon line. This option would necessitate investment in opening new stations within Cambridge for new employment location, and outside Cambridge for new or expanding residential villages. Analysis

Option 6 - Virtual Highway

Development would be allowed within a corridor which provides a high capacity electronic communications system. It would provide multi-media (computer, audio and visual) high speed communication for tele-working, tele-shopping, tele-education and other services. It is a more speculative development which might reduce the need for personal travel. Analysis

Option 7 - New Town

Development would be concentrated in a single location beyond the Green Belt. The capacity of the New Town would be large enough to provide an alternative to the City of Cambridge for employment and services. It would necessitate large investment in infrastructure. Analysis

To Option 1 Analysis