Leeds is at the centre of the Northern Powerhouse and its railway station is the busiest transport hub in the North, used by 31 million people a year, with connections to other major UK cities and towns. Our development plans for the station will see full integration with HS2, creating a transport hub and commercial centre that will have a through flow of 70m people p.a. by the mid- 2030s.
We have plans for further major infrastructure changes that will underpin the wider regeneration of the city, unlock development sites, support the doubling in size of the city centre and its economy and create new investment opportunities. The HS2 Growth Strategy and the Connecting Leeds transport strategy detail the scale of ambition for the city, which is anticipated to result in c£50bn of economic growth for the city region economy by 2050.
A series of major infrastructure changes are also planned that will unlock the potential of local development sites around Leeds, helping to double the size of the city centre and creating a string of new investment opportunities. Over the next five to six years, the Government, council, and private sector partners have committed to investing £500m on major transport works, with key projects including:
- The Leeds Public Transport Investment Programme, which will use £174m DfT grant to transform the bus network, improve rail stations at key economic, housing growth and employment locations, and providing a world-class city centre gateways.
- Major bus operators providing more than 300 new low emissions buses by the end of 2020.
- The West Yorkshire Transport Fund set up in 2014, which will deliver the East Leeds Orbital Road, city centre traffic improvements an airport link road and more park and rides.
- The city’s HS2 Growth Strategy and the Connecting Leeds transport strategy set out the scale and predicted impact of these impressive projects, which are expected to result in around £50bn of economic growth for the city region economy by 2050.
- It’s also anticipated that these improvements will reinvent some of the city centre’s spaces, create modern attractive environments for commercial activity, encourage growth in key sectors and create new opportunities to invest in smart technology.
- Leeds Integrated Station Masterplan (LISM) will increase capacity not just at Leeds Station, but others, including those planned at Leeds Bradford Airport, the White Rose and Thorpe Park. It will also support other interchange public transport modes, such as buses, via the already connected Leeds Passenger Transport Improvement Plan.
- By early 2020 Leeds will have implemented a Clean Air Zone, encouraging cleaner transport mode use. New walking and cycling routes, including a new city centre park, and a Cycle Superhighway between Leeds and Bradford are being progressed. The HS2 and Leeds Integrated Station proposals will pedestrianise Neville Street and transform the Dark Arches, ensuring connectivity throughout the HS2 build.
- Transforming Cities funding has recently been secured by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to encourage more public transport use and to integrate HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail with local networks, interchange and safe arrival. This is a critical next step for delivering the transport infrastructure needed in a thriving city.