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DfT agrees to fund new rail stations on Leeds-Bradford line

The government has agreed to make nearly £10m available to fund a major regeneration scheme in West Yorkshire, which will see two new stations built on the rail line between Leeds and Bradford.

Patrick McLoughlin, the transport secretary, stated that the DfT will fund up to £9.5m of the £16m Leeds Rail Growth scheme. The project includes two new stations on the Leeds-Bradford railway line — at Apperley Bridge and at Kirkstall Forge — both designed to encourage more people to swap their cars for train journeys.

Apperley Bridge station will include a park and ride site to serve both Leeds and Bradford, while the Kirkstall Forge station will kick start over £400m of mixed-use development at the Old Forge site, which will include around 1,000 new homes and extensive commercial buildings.

In a long-awaited announcement, McLoughlin said: “These stations represent a major regeneration project for West Yorkshire and provide new transport links for the wider community. They will unlock growth and help create many hundreds of new jobs.

"The £9.5m we are putting into this project shows that the coalition government is serious about investing in the infrastructure the country needs to drive economic growth, both locally and nationally.”

Additionally, the development is expected to support 300 jobs during construction. On completion it will create an estimated 1,800 jobs directly linked to the development and 300 more across the wider area.

The Rail Growth Package was granted 'Programme Entry Status' by the DfT in December 2011. “Full Approval” of the scheme, however, has only now been granted by the DfT following submission of the final business case.

The DfT announcement means that work can begin on the scheme, which is promoted by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority. The main works are scheduled to start in July with completion of the scheme in August 2015.

Cllr James Lewis, chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority's Transport Committee, said: “Building these two new stations will support new jobs, reduce traffic on busy routes between Leeds and Bradford and ease traffic congestion in the two city centres.

“Around 40% of the overall cost of the new stations has been raised locally including a contribution of over £5m from the Kirkstall Forge site developer Commercial Estates Group (CEG). The local funding, which will be supplemented by funding from the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, means we can now push ahead with the detailed design and construction work for these new stations.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email [email protected]


Jb   30/05/2014 at 13:22

Good news! When will we hear more on the proposal to re-instate the short section of line between Skipton and Colne to recreate a further trans Pennine route, I wonder? Also, can the City of Ripon expect to be reconnected to the rail network in the foreseeable future? Its a national disgrace that this city has been cut off the system.

Nonsuchmike   30/05/2014 at 20:08

At long, long, last! The announcement is now, but when do they actually raise a shovel? I see no mention of start dates. Totally agree, JB, the additional trans-Pennine route is a "must have", as there are bound to be snags which make a T-P line unusable during northern hub electrification in the years to come. Surely Local Authorities and Governments must realise that what we desperately need is more railtrack laid down to improve the service and offer greater flexibility of train movements for passengers as well as freight.

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