Possible routes for a new train line have been announced.The Cambridge to Oxford rail line could see new stations at St Neots, Cambourne or Bassingbourn.The new line will create a direct connection between Bedford and Cambridge, something not seen since the 1960s. Revealing 5 route options the East West Railway Company wants the public to have their say.
What are the options?
Three of the five options offered show a southern route through South Cambridgeshire via Bassingbourn. Two take a northern route via Cambourne. East West Rail Company’s chief executive Simon Blanchflower said: ‘Bedford,
Cambridge and communities in between need the right kind of infra-structure to support them. We’re hoping that residents will give us feedback on these route options to help us understand the priorities of the people this line will serve.’
Why should we in St Ives be interested?
Once complete the east-west rail link will form a key section of a new £7 billion infrastructure network between Oxford, Milton Keynes and Cambridge, dubbed the ‘brain-belt’ arc. It’s claimed the plans will ‘boost the region’s economy by £160 billion a year’. Anyone who has tried to buy or rent property in Cambridge will be very aware that house prices are among the highest in the country and yet here in St Ives property values are modest by comparison.
While St Ives forms a very attractive satellite town to Cambridge, changes to road and train links nearby my well make our town a much more attractive location for Cambridge commuters putting further pressure on housing requirements. Perhaps this is a question for our town meeting on the 2nd March!