Majority vote to lodge formal Leeds trolleybus bid UPDATED

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A formal bid to build a trolleybus in Leeds is to be lodged after a majority of councillors voted in favour.

The 92 councillors at yesterday’s (July 1) meeting of Leeds City Council voted 68 in favour, 19 against the submission of a formal application for a new generation transport (NGT) scheme to the Department for Transport.

Now a Transport and Works Act Order will be lodged with the Secretary of State Patrick McLoughlin by September 12. Coun Keith Wakefield, council leader, said: “Let’s get on with it, show vision to tackle congestion and road safety and do something we are all desperate to do and improve our economic performance.”

‘Line One’ will cover a 14km stretch from Holt Park in the north to Stourton in the south.

Metro claims the use of dedicated lanes and junction priority will shave more than two hours a week off travel time for commuters using trolleybuses from the Bodington Park and Ride site to Leeds City Centre.

Commuters using the Stourton Park and Ride would save around 50 minutes. Coun Jonathan Bentley (Lib Dem, Weetwood), who voted against, said he was “not opposed to NGT” and “in favour of a modern congestion-busting system”, but he claimed the environmental impact of building a system run on electricity, that requires 400 trees to be felled to make room for cables and wires, was flawed.

Coun Richard Lewis, executive member for development and the economy, said a trolleybus would regenerate parts of the city and improve access to jobs and education.

Coun Andrew Carter, leader of the conservative group, said Leeds needed to invest in a modern transport plan.

More details on the proposal can be viewed at a public display in Briggate on Tuesday July 16, between 9am and 4.30pm.

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