Green light for Leeds’ £21m Headrow scheme

Plans to improve central Leeds’ transport links around the Headrow have been given the green light by the council.

The £20.7m scheme will deliver improvements to bus, pedestrian and cycling infrastructure in the central Leeds area. The council says this will help reduce congestion, reduce delays and improve bus reliability. It is aiming to double the number of bus passengers in the area.

It will be part of the Leeds Public Transport Investment Programme, which consists of £270m to be invested in a number of schemes across Leeds. It is funded by the council, the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, the Department for Transport, bus operators and developers.

The area around the Headrow Gateway, Infirmary Street and Park Row as well as Harewood junction were considered in proposals brought before Leeds City Council.

The plans include a “high quality public realm” with new cycle lanes and pedestrian crossings, which it says will improve the townscape and enhance the setting of heritage assets, such as the Town Hall and Victoria Gardens. Vicar Lane will become open to two-way traffic for buses and some general traffic.

In a report, the council said: “Leeds’ transport infrastructure represents a major challenge for the City. Years of under investment and its impact on the City’s economy and quality of life means a
comprehensive package of interventions are required over the next decade.

“The scheme will transform the area into a world-class Gateway to Leeds City Centre for bus users, pedestrians and cycle users. This will enable bus services to operate with fewer delays and provide high standard waiting facilities for bus users. Connectivity for pedestrians and cycle users will be enhanced, making the area safer and more inclusive.

“This will make the centre more welcoming and attractive for visitors, residents and employees.”

Park and Ride sites at Elland Road and Stourton have been part of these overall public transport plans as part of the Connect Leeds initiative.

(c) Business Desk, April 2019