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Revolutionary £2.7bn plan for Derbyshire’s links to HS2 hub station at Toton

A £2.7bn transport plan to deliver fast and frequent connections to the HS2 East Midlands Hub station at Toton and key development sties across the East Midlands has been released, with hopes to aid the economic recovery for Derbyshire post Covid-19 and accelerate the benefits of HS2.

The plan, published by a partnership including Derby City Council, Derbyshire County Council, Midlands Connect and East Midlands Councils, includes new and improved rail, bus and tram networks and enhanced road infrastructure.

Under the proposals, Derby would benefit from four direct rail services to the HS2 East Midlands Hub each hour, as well as enjoying an 18 minutes connection to a new railway station at East Midlands Airport.

The plan would also see the reintroduction of passenger services on the Maid Marian Line, forming a new direct rail connection between Derby and Mansfield, via the HS2 East Midlands Hub. A new bus rapid transit service would also link the HS2 East Midlands Hub, Pride Park, Derby City Centre and Derby Railway station.

The vision is split intro three stages, with the first earmarked for completion by 2030, to begin development before HS2 trains first arrive in the East Midlands.

These developments are fully integrated with the work of the East Midlands Development Corporation, which has government backing to deliver 84,000 high-value jobs and 4,500 homes at key growth sites close to the HS2 station at Toton, including East Midlands Airport, the former Chetwynd Barracks and Ratcliffe-on-Soar Power Station.

The East Midlands currently has the lowest transport spend per head of anywhere in the UK, £245 which is 49% below UK average, and less than a quarter of that allocated in London. If the East Midlands was funded in line with the UK average, it would receive £1bn extra to spend on transport each year.

The region will also begin to see the creation of high-value jobs and housing before high-speed trains reach Toton, improving transport connectivity and social mobility for some of the region’s most deprived communities.

Sir John Peace, chairman of Midlands Connect and Midlands Engine said: “The arrival of High Speed Two is a watershed moment for our region, and an opportunity that we must grasp with both hands. As we work towards an economic renewal post-COVID-19, the East Midlands must step forward and work together to secure the transport network, economic future and social mobility it deserves.”

Councilor Chris Poulter, leader of Derby City Council said: “The opening of our new high speed network will be a game changer for the East Midlands, but it’s only once the East Midlands Hub is connected with growth sites and assets from across Derbyshire that its true impact can be realised. It’s essential that these plans are brought forward, vastly enhancing connectivity across the city of Derby and beyond, with new links from the train station to the city centre, on to Pride Park, and importantly to the HS2 station at Toton. If we do this right, we can future proof our transport network and enhance connectivity across the region.”

Image: Derby City Council 


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