Leeds’s trolleybus scheme is “in the best interests” of the city, according to a heritage boss.
The £250m New Generation Transport (NGT) scheme came under fire from community campaigners at a special day-long meeting of the City Plans Panel on Tuesday. (June 25)
Environmental concerns about loss of trees, unsightly overhead wires and poles, and the impact on existing conservation areas, were repeatedly voiced about each of the eight lengths of the 14km route that were under discussion.
But Dr Kevin Grady, director of Leeds Civic Trust, has retaliated with his take on the plan to create rapid transport routes in the city.
He said NGT would cut journey times, mean investment in highways, improvement of cycle lanes, while replanting of trees would “more than compensate” for any losses.
Improved transport links from the city centre to the Royal Armouries and New Dock, formerly Clarence Dock, will “revitalise” the waterfront, he said.
Links to Hunslet District Centre and Belle Isle will “boost the regeneration” of these areas.
Dr Grady also praised the “highly imaginative” proposal of making almost the whole of Woodhouse Lane between the city centre and the two universities public transport-only area.
He said: “We believ(e that it is in the best interests of the city as a whole that the scheme is implemented. It is important to the future of Leeds that it has a modern transport system, and NGT on the Holt Park to Stourton route is the first of what should become a series of rapid transit routes in the city.”
On Monday (July 1) Leeds City Council is expected to progress an application for a Transport and Work Act Order, needed so NGT can be built.
Leeds Civic Trust aims to encourage development and public amenities that take pride in the heritage of Leeds.