The need for a new station
The Department for Transport (DfT) published a Strategic Outline Business Case in November 2017 for a new railway station in the south of Cambridge, serving the internationally significant Cambridge Biomedical Campus and Southern Fringe development areas of Cambridge.
Cambridge is one of the UK’s most successful and fastest growing cities. By 2020, the Cambridge Biomedical Campus is expected to house the largest concentration of biomedical expertise in Europe including an international conference centre and high capacity hotel. Over the next four years, 3750 new jobs are expected to be created. It is envisaged that by 2031 new housing developments across the Southern Fringe comprising an estimated 4000 new homes shall be constructed. This future growth in Cambridge is expected to place significant pressures on the railway system which is already running at full capacity.
What we are doing
The aim of the Cambridge South Infrastructure Enhancement Project is to develop plans for a new station in the vicinity of the growing biomedical campus along with associated infrastructure to sustainably improve connectivity in the Cambridgeshire region.
Network Rail have identified the preferred location of the proposed Cambridge South new railway station in June 2020. The chosen location corresponds with Option 1 presented at the public consultation events that we held in January 2020.
The decision to select Option 1 follows a review of engineering and design information together with the results of public consultation conducted earlier this year.
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The new station is proposed to be located adjacent to the Guided Busway (Addenbrook’s bridge) and will provide a new transport choice available to patients, visitors and employees when travelling to and from the Cambridge Biomedical Campus. The station will also provide direct access to a range of potential routes on the rail network for those in South Cambridgeshire and better connections across the southern fringe of the city.
The DfT has provided £10m to Network Rail to develop detailed proposals for Cambridge South station and associated infrastructure. This includes £5m from local and private sector funding partners in Cambridgeshire, consisting of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority, the Greater Cambridge Partnership and AstraZeneca Ltd. On 11 March 2020, the Government’s budget announced funding to build Cambridge South station (subject to consent).
The first consultation round opened on 20 January and closed on 2 March 2020.
We ran nine public consultation events on proposals for a new railway station and associated infrastructure in the south of Cambridge in January 2020. The public were invited to attend the consultation events to comment on the proposals being put forward which includes three possible location options and early designs for the station and possible access.
Almost 1000 people attended the events and over 960 comments were submitted to us from members of the public and stakeholders (via post, online or in person) before 2 March 2020 when the consultation closed.
The vast majority, 94 per cent supported the need for the station to be built. Out of the three options presented, 55 per cent of those who submitted comments supported Option 1 (northern option)
As well as commenting on the location, Network Rail was challenged by the public to protect places of significance such as Hobson’s Park and Nine Wells Nature Reserve to consider the impacts on the environment and businesses on the east side of the railway; to consider impacts on sustainable travel modes, including walking, cycling and public transport and enhance the connections for such modes. These concerns will continue to be considered during the next phases of development.
A second round of public consultation is being planned for later in 2020 to seek feedback on the architectural form of the station, construction elements such as construction routes and diversions, preliminary environmental impacts and the operational scheme. Date and time for the second consultation round will be announced in due course.
Submission of a Transport and Works Act Order to the Secretary of State for Transport is anticipated in 2021 following the selection of a preferred option.
Subject to gaining consent, work could start on the station in 2023 with a funder target of station opening in 2025.
Thank you to everyone you attended the event and/or submitted comments on these important proposals.
If you have any enquiries or questions about the proposals for Cambridge South Station, please contact the 24/7 helpline team on 0345 711 4141 or visit our Contact Us webpage.