This week, I’m going to direct you to a couple of great blogs by local historian and politics commentator, Antony Carpen, which together make an informative pair.
The first responds to a couple of letters published in the Cambridge Independent this week. The letter writers are clearly disaffected with many aspects of the city’s evolution and lay out their own thoughts on how it could be improved. Antony explains how our complex and confused local government arrangements make it difficult or indeed impossible to bring about the improvements that are suggested.
The second talks about the current state of play for proposed developments at the Cherry Hinton Lakes site (Coldham’s Lane) and the Grafton. It challenges the developers to respond to public requests for them to do better on critical issues such as design and transport.
Taken together, they sum up exactly why Greater Cambridge’s rush for growth is leading to such disappointing and dysfunctional outcomes. The idea that the transport needs of a new science park employing thousands of staff can be met by “commuter shuttle buses from the Newmarket Road Park and Ride site” is laughable, but either the developers think they have a chance of getting away with it or they simply don’t have a credible alternative. Both possibilities are concerning. We should be very grateful that Antony is documenting the city’s trajectory in such painstaking detail.