Summary Report

3. The Cycling and Walking Option

Elements of the Cycling and Walking Option

  • Extension of cycleways to new developments on the edge of the City
  • Introduction of the Green Ring (a linking together of cycle routes around Cambridge)
  • Extending the network into the Sub-region.

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The proposed improvements for cycling and walking, such as those proposed by Sustrans, have not been modelled separately because the strategic nature of the model is not sensitive enough to local changes.

Distance and time for cycling and walking are not fundamentally changed by the improvements. The proposed improvements probably do alter the convenience of the routes and also their safety, making cycling and walking more attractive. Therefore the improvements may counteract the probable decline of cycling, as average distances become larger.

What has been modelled is the impact on cycling and walking after introducing the other options:

  • The Public Transport and Orbital Options reduce cycling trips by 7% within Cambridge while the congestion charging option increases them by 13%.
  • The Combined Option maintains practically the same level of cycling trips.
  • The improvements in public transport also reduce the walking trips by 6%, while there are 2% fewer with the Orbital Option.
  • The Congestion Charging Option increases walking trips by 11% while the Combined Option maintains practically the same number of walking trips.

The impact on cycling and walking is due more to the changes in the number of working households living within Cambridge City rather than the policies themselves. The exception is the public Transport Option, which would offer a convenient alternative to walking in the City.

The cost of implementing the proposed cycle network has been estimated at about 1.3 million. The inner circle is estimated at about 0.8 million and the extension of radial routes at about 0.5 million. In addition, there are costs in building bridges over the Cam and A14 but these are funded separately from developers contributions.


This option has not been tested separately, as the model is not sensitive to small changes in the convenience of the routes.

  • The number of cyclists and pedestrians varies depending on other options, increasing with congestion charging and reducing with public transport and highway improvements
  • As the City expands the average travelling distance increases, making cycling and walking less popular
  • This option would make cycling and walking an attractive alternative to the car for some trips
Introducing the Study Base
Cycling/ Walking Public Transport Orbital Highway Congestion Charging Combined Option Options Compared