OXFORD - CAMBRIDGE 'EXPRESSWAY'
21st November 2016: Tonight Bicester Town Council Policy Committee received a presentation from Cherwell District Council about the proposed 'expressway' linking Oxford and Cambridge. The following is a summary of the presentation. For more information on the over-arching proposals driving the development of the arc between these two cities including Milton Keynes please refer to the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) report here.
- The study for an 'expressway' was commissioned by the Department for Transport.
- The aim was to discover how do you improve the routing of traffic strategically and drive economic activity
- The Oxford-Cambridge Expressway (OCE) is one of several studies including another in the trans-penine region.
- The study was compiled by WSP who studied 40 options starting from the M4/A34 junction onwards
- An 'expressway' is not yet an official term. It loosely is something that is not quite motorway but more than a standard dual carriageway by having grade separated (i.e. flyover) junctions. The upgraded A43 around Silverstone is an example.
- The target timeframe for construction is 2031 to 2046.
- Could to deliver £163 billion improvement by economic activity by 2050.
Three options have been strongly developed;
- Purple: A422 > Buckingham > Milton Keynes.
- Red: Arncott > follow the route of EWR Rail > Milton Keynes.
- Green: South of Oxford, Didcot > M40 J7 > Haddenham > Aylesbury M1 J13.
The currently preferred option appears to be the 'Green' route for the following reasons;
- Avoiding Oxford would reduce the cost/complication of routing the new road through Botley.
- It would ease the congestion on northern section of the A34 to the M40, J9.
- New settlements are proposed around M40, J7 or Chalgrove Airfield which would be connected to this route.
- Plans exist to expand Haddenham.
Buckinghamshire County Council are pushing for a High Speed 2 (HS2) station in the Claydon area where the line crosses the East West Rail route. Currently there are no HS2 stations between Birmingham and London. It is proposed that this will be developed into a new town.
Apologies for not having access to the source document for reference or being able to provide maps. We will try to improve this by finding this additional information.