Cambridge 2000: Histon Road

Description: Histon Road: speed detector
Histon Road map for Histon Road
Date photograph taken: 21 Jul 2000 (Alternative map: Google map)

In 2000 this was the state of the art in detection of speeding vehicles. It does not work particularly well, in particular it needs to be loaded with film. Cars slow down for these cameras and then speed up again a hundred meters down the road. The government puts up many signs warning these speed traps exist, even where they do not, as part of its psychological warfare. Another ploy is to put markings on both sides of the road, although the camera only works on one side.

These cameras are indicative of the government interest in controlling the behaviour of its citizens. In a matter of years every vehicle will be permanently tracked using wireless systems.

In 2001 the government ordered that such cameras be painted bright yellow in order that motorists see them coming. This was part of an attempt to portray the cameras as safety measures rather than as a crude revenue raising device.

In 2015 the Greater Cambridge City Deal proposed destroying all the trees seen in the photo (and many other trees) in order to add a bus lane to Histon Road.

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