Leeds City councillors support bid for ‘levelling up’ investment

Councillors in Leeds have reiterated their calls for £40m of government money to go towards “revolutionary” improvements to the city’s leisure services and West Leeds roads.

The council is hoping to gain around £20m of funding each for two schemes, from the Government’s Levelling Up fund.

The first proposal focuses on travel and environmental improvements to the outer ring road between Horsforth and Pudsey, while the second is to help create a new “Well Being Centre” on the site of existing Fearnville Leisure Centre.

A third proposal, a bid for which is not yet ready to be submitted, is a “thematic cultural asset scheme” that, the report claims, “could focus on the delivery of strategic green space and parks improvements at a sub-district level,” reports the West Leeds Dispatch.

Introducing the proposals to Leeds City Council’s executive board, Coun Helen Hayden said:“(The wellbeing centre) is a very ambitious proposal and it is ready to go. It is a vision we have had as a city council for a number of years. It would be good to fulfil this ambition for what will be a revolutionary wellbeing centre in one of the poorest areas in the city. It needs that help in health outcomes.”

Conservatives group leader Coun Andrew Carter added: “Traffic congestion there is at a standstill so to address that at an early stage will be useful.

“The cycleway makes a lot of sense with active lifestyles. In particular, I would have liked to have seen a level crossing point on Calverley Lane between Calverley and Farsley.

“For the third scheme (the park) – I am in support of it, but the consultation needs to be with all the MPs and all the councillors. We have wards with different members of parliament, and we need to sing from the same hymn sheet if possible.”

Proposals for Fearnville include 5,000 square metres of new space, including a six-lane pool, small training pool with water confidence area, fitness gym, studios and outdoor fitness areas. It is hoped final plans for the scheme will be drawn up by the end of this year.

The road scheme is expected to include junction improvements at Fink Hill, Horsforth roundabout and at Calverley Lane; new pedestrian and cycling facilities along the Ring Road towards Pudsey; and new pedestrian and cycle crossings.


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