Leeds ,
12
November
2015
|
16:29
Europe/London

Details of initial public consultation on improving access to Leeds Bradford Airport released

Details of the initial public consultation to be carried out on options supporting the development of Leeds Bradford Airport through improved road access have been released today.

Leeds Bradford Airport is one of the fastest growing in the UK used by 3.3million passengers a year. It also contributes more than £100m annually to the city region economy and was earmarked as a key element of the long-term transport vision for Leeds put forward by the council last month, with the need to develop its strategic connectivity seen as critical to its future success as the regional airport and as an economic hub.

The initial public consultation runs from Monday 23 November to Sunday 24 January 2016, and will see Leeds City Council seeking views on the three options outlined in September to improve access to the airport. This has been identified as a key need to support its future growth, as well as tackling existing congestion and traffic issues in the local road network.

Improving road access has been prioritised in the short to medium-term as a way of aiding the growth of the airport and the local and regional economy. In addition to better road access, Leeds City Council, the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leeds Bradford Airport are examining the possibility of a rail link in the longer term.

Details of the three proposed options for initial consideration, a map and supporting information can be seen at www.leeds.gov.uk/AirportLinkRoad, with a questionnaire available from Monday 23 November when the public consultation period begins.

Of the three proposed options for improving access, two would see the creation of a new link road while an alternative consists of widening existing roads and upgrading junctions.

Leeds City Council executive member for regeneration, transport and planning Councillor Richard Lewis said:

“The response to us releasing the outline details of the three options in September sparked a great deal of debate so now we want as many people as possible to take part in this consultation and tell us what they think.

“Leeds Bradford Airport is a key part of our current and future city and regional economy, so it is essential we make the access to and from it the best we can while also respecting and protecting the needs of the local communities, so the more people who take part in this consultation the more effective we can be terms of making the right decisions.”

The first option proposes the building of a new road from the A65, running along the eastern edge of the airport before joining the A658 to the north. This is the most expensive estimated to cost up to £75million. The second option sees the new road follow the same initial path from the A65 running between Rawdon and Horsforth but runs to the south west of the airport before joining the A658. This is expected to cost up to £50million.

The third option does not involve building a new road but upgrading the existing A65 and A658 around Rawdon and Yeadon to the airport. This would see junctions upgraded and where needed some road widening. This is the least expensive option costing up to £15million.

Aside from boosting access to the airport, improved road access would also help to tackle existing problems of congestion and delays on the A65 and A658 Harrogate road as well as local road network issues.

As part of the consultation, public drop-in sessions will take place as follows:

  • Leeds Civic Hall, Tuesday 24 November 3-8pm
  • Horsforth Mechanics Institute, Wednesday 25 November 1-4:30pm
  • Horsforth St Margaret’s Parish Centre, Friday 27 November 3-8pm
  • Greenacre Hall, Rawdon, Saturday 28 November 12noon-3pm

Other local events are currently being arranged, to be kept informed of the details when they are finalised please email AirportLinkRoad@leeds.gov.uk

In addition, a stall will be at the airport from November 23-29, while leaflets and copies of the questionnaire will also be available at local libraries and the Leeds Development Enquiry Centre in the Leonardo Building on Rossington Street.

The consultation will also seek the views of key stakeholders including community groups, neighbourhood forums, councillors and MPs in Leeds, Bradford and Harrogate, as well as parish and town councils, local businesses, the Leeds Chamber of Commerce, the Federation of Small Businesses and transport groups.

The scheme to improve access to the airport is to be funded through the West Yorkshire Plus Transport Fund with Leeds City Council leading on its planning and delivery. It is hoped the chosen scheme will be completed during 2023.

For information and to take part in the consultation from November 23 visit www.leeds.gov.uk/AirportLinkRoad

Notes to editors:

Between 2008 and 2013 passenger numbers rose at Leeds Bradford Airport rose by 16 per cent, and the Department for Transport forecasts its usage could rise to 7.1m passengers a year by 2030 and over nine million by 2050. The airport currently supports 2,600 jobs and potential has been identified to expand the airport’s route network with new international connections opening up new tourism and trade markets as well as creating new employment.

As part of the plans to improve transport links, the aim is to increase passengers travelling to the airport on public transport to 20 per cent of all trips by 2024 and 25 per cent by 2030.

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:

Leeds City Council press office,

Tel: 0113 395 0244