Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Congestion-busting bus scheme gets go ahead

A major scheme to improve bus journeys along one of the busiest commuter routes in Leeds has been given the go ahead.

The council has been awarded grant funding of almost £20m by the Department of Transport to construct the A65 Quality Bus Corridor. This will deliver big improvements to bus travel along Kirkstall Road, which is used by around 7,500 passengers a day. Preliminary works will start this month with major construction work starting in April. It is expected to take two years to complete.

The scheme will deliver 4km of new bus lanes to both sides of the road, plus cycle lanes and seven new or improved pedestrian crossings together with new bus shelters and real time passenger information displays.

Six bus routes use the corridor serving destinations like the airport, Guiseley, Otley, Bradford and Keighley with up to 28 buses each hour during the day. The improvements should save passengers seven minutes on their journeys to and from the city centre during the morning and evening rush hours.

Councillor Andrew Carter, leader of the council and executive board member with responsibility for transport said:
“We welcome this funding from the Department of Transport, which will allow us to move forward and build this key scheme after many years of planning.

“Once completed, the bus corridor will reduce congestion and deliver significant improvements to bus travel for the people of north west Leeds.

“Reducing congestion and making public transport a more attractive alternative to using cars will also help us in our bid to lower the city’s CO2 emissions, which is an important part of the council’s commitment to addressing its impact on climate change.”

The council’s delivery partners for the scheme are Metro and the bus operators First West Yorkshire and Transdev who run services on the corridor.

ENDS

For media enquiries, please contact;
Claire Macklam, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 395 1578
Email: claire.macklam@leeds.gov.uk