NGT trolleybus system gets a step closer as business leaders signal their support
With the Transport and Works Act Order (TWAO) submission scheduled for 19th September, Hammerson’s, Jones Lang LaSalle, Yorkshire Design Developments, Leeds Rugby Ltd, Allied London, Leeds Civic Trust, Bruntwood and SMG, operators of the first direct Arena, have all voiced their support.
The TWAO will grant Metro and Leeds City Council the powers they need to commission, build and operate the 14.8km trolleybus system running through the city centre from Holt Park in North Leeds and Stourton in South Leeds.
Joe Swindells, Hammerson’s project director for Victoria Gate, commented: “We believe that the delivery of NGT is critical to the success and development of Leeds. The high-end retail brands that we will bring to the city need to see that Leeds has a clear vision for the future, encompassing the short, medium and long-term, as well as the city’s commitment to a high-quality, pedestrian-friendly shopping environment.”
Peter Connolly, founder of Yorkshire Design Developments, said: “NGT is a scheme that will connect the city, providing areas outside the centre with fast and reliable journeys as well as a useful park and ride system. It will deliver significant financial benefits, which means developers and investors can pursue future projects with confidence.
“The technology behind the scheme is simple, effective and well tested. Other cities have already adopted this approach and it has proved good for their development. For Leeds to continue to develop improved connectivity is vital and the proposed network promises this.”
Ben Williams, general manager at the first direct Arena, said: “The first direct Arena is set to become a major attraction for Leeds, drawing in audiences from across the wider region and the UK, as well as from the city itself.
“Modern transport connections are going to be key to its successful operation. NGT offers the ideal solution, providing improved access to the city centre and its leisure attractions."
Gary Hetherington, chief executive of Leeds Carnegie RUFC and Leeds Rugby Ltd feels outlying areas of Leeds will also benefit from the scheme. He said: “The NGT will further help to cement Headingley’s status as a fantastic sports venue. It will offer easier access for crowds wanting to get in and out of the stadium and it will also encourage many fans to leave the car at home when travelling to the games. This will help in taking the pressure off the local streets, benefitting the local residents and we’re hopeful that it will also encourage increased attendances by away-day fans.”
This latest show of support follows recent statements from Allied London, owner of New Dock, and Leeds Civic Trust. Chief Executive of Allied London, Mike Ingall, said NGT will drive a new wave of development, helping Leeds to evolve as a holistic city, while Kevin Grady, director of Leeds Civic Trust, said it is in the best interests of the city as a whole that the scheme is implemented.
The TWAO submission is the first stage in gaining the legal approval the city needs to construct and operate a trolleybus system. This is likely to be followed by a public inquiry next spring.
One of the city’s key transformational projects, New Generation Transport is at the heart of creating an integrated transport network for Leeds to support the city’s future development. At an investment level of £250 million, it is one of the largest investments in transport infrastructure in the UK outside London.
The first line will run from Holt Park in the north of the city to Stourton in the south, with the possibility of a second and third extension being planned. The extensions will travel to St James’s University Hospital and the new Aire Valley Leeds Enterprise Zone to the south east of the city centre.
More information on NGT, along with all the latest information about the project, can be found on the project website at www.ngtmetro.com and by following @ngttrolleybus on Twitter or on Facebook at New Generation Transport. People can also contact the project team on 0113 251 7421 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New Generation Transport (NGT) is one of the city's key transformational projects. The trolleybus system will be an integrated rapid transit network for Leeds that supports the city's future development, transforms public transport and offers a real and attractive alternative to car travel.
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