Liberal Democrats welcome an Extension of Sustainable Transport as East-West Rail Decide on the Route through Cambourne as their Preference for the Central Section

East West Rail route through Cambourne (East West Rail)East-West Rail announced at the end of January 2020 that, following on from an extensive consultation, which included the views of Hertfordshire County Council, the company had decided on Option E as their Preferred Route. This is the route through Cambourne.

Hertfordshire has road traffic that is 35% higher than the UK average and, in addition, suffers from a lack of East-West transport infrastructure.

Although not passing through the county, East West Rail has the potential to reduce some traffic flows through Hertfordshire. In addition a restored rail route will be more sustainable and far less environmentally damaging than the proposed "Oxford-Cambridge Expressway" which will roughly follow the same general direction - again outside of Hertfordshire. However, whether the "Expressway" will ever get build is another matter.

With regard to the East-West Rail project, local Lib Dem councillors are in favour of Option E as the Preferred Route for the Central Section to link Bedford with Cambridge.

The route via Cambourne was the option South Cambridgeshire District Council said should be chosen when asked during a consultation.

Cllr Aidan Van de Weyer, Deputy Leader and lead cabinet member for strategic infrastructure at the council, said:

"We are pleased and relieved that an announcement has finally been made on the route of East West Rail. We are also supportive of the decision to run the new railway from Bedford to Cambridge via Cambourne. We were told that one of the key factors in determining the route was the environmental opportunities that this option offers. Any project of this size has an impact, but overall it will offer huge scope for environmental enhancements, much of which be in South Cambridgeshire.

"The decision on whether this will be an electrified line has not yet been made but we are told that it will be a net zero carbon railway which is exactly what we would want as we move towards being a zero carbon district by 2050."