Policy I/SI: Safeguarding important infrastructure

DRAFT version for various committee meetings.

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What will this policy do?

This policy will set out what infrastructure should be safeguarded from the impacts of development, and how this should be assessed.

Proposed policy direction

We propose to safeguard the following strategic and important infrastructure from being negatively impacted by development:

  • Lord’s Bridge Radio Telescope
  • Existing rail freight facilities and sidings at Duxford, Foxton, Fulbourn and Whittlesford

We propose to work with strategic infrastructure providers, regional and sub regional bodies to consider whether any planned strategic infrastructure should be safeguarded in accordance with any national or sub regional/regional policy or approval mechanism. Any future land identified that will be required for safeguarding purposes will be shown in policies maps at later stages of the Local Plan process.

Why is this policy needed?

The internationally important Mullard Radio Astronomy Observatory at Lord’s Bridge contains unique radio and optical telescopes which are susceptible to interference. Arrangements are made to consult the University of Cambridge about the technical consequences for the Observatory of proposed development. Harm caused to the Observatory will be overcome with the use of conditions or planning obligations to regulate the installation and use of equipment likely to interfere with the operation of the Observatory.

There are a number of railway sidings, which either are used, or have the potentially to be used in the future. These will continue to be safeguarded. There are also number of major projects, particularly for transport, going through regulatory processes outside the Local Plan. Depending on the stage these have reached when the Local Plan reaches its final stages, it may be appropriate for these to be identified on the policies map and safeguarded. This will be kept under review as the plan is being prepared.

What consultation have we done on this issue?

The First Conversation consultation did not specifically consult on this issue.

What alternatives did we consider?

No Policy – Not considered a reasonable alternative as this would risk jeopardising important infrastructure.

Supporting evidence studies and topic papers

  • Greater Cambridge Local Plan: Topic paper 8: Infrastructure

Existing policies in adopted 2018 Local Plans

South Cambridgeshire Local Plan 2018

  • Policy TI/1: Chesterton Rail Station and Interchange
  • Policy TI/7: Lord’s Bridge Radio Telescope
  • Policy TI/4: Rail Freight and Interchanges

Cambridge Local Plan 2018

  • Policy 39: Mullard Radio Astronomy Observatory, Lord’s Bridge

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