TWO new train stations are expected to boost passenger numbers and stimulate growth when they open on the Bradford to Leeds line.
After four years of campaigning, Government approval means construction can finally begin on the stops at Kirkstall Forge in Leeds and Apperley Bridge, Bradford.
The Department for Transport has agreed to put up almost £10million towards the improvements to the commuter belt, designed to ease congestion in both city centres.
Kirkstall Forge’s new station, which will provide a six-minute link to the city centre, also forms a key part of the Commercial Estates Group (CEG) regeneration plan for the area. Developers plan to build houses, offices, leisure facilities and shops on 56 acres of brownfield land close to the historic site.
Rachel Reeves, MP for Leeds West, said: “After four years of campaigning I am thrilled for the community of Kirkstall, and people across west Leeds that we have agreement to go ahead with the development at Kirkstall Forge.
“Getting new infrastructure in place will create jobs and having a new train station will help so many people from the area commute into Leeds and Bradford for work or leisure.
“With the station agreed, new housing, retail and office space will be built with jobs created on this historical site. Getting this project from drawing board to agreement has been a triumph of partnership working.”
Around 40 per cent of the overall cost of the new stations has been raised locally including a contribution of over £5million from CEG.
Project leads the West Yorkshire Combined Authority said an ‘appropriate’ level train services will be provided in line with the level of development at Kirkstall Forge.
To begin with, there will be a regular hourly service at Kirkstall Forge with additional peak services and two trains per hour at Apperley Bridge.