Update on works to improve Leeds city centre transport connectivity

Changes to traffic management on the approach to City Square are being introduced to prioritise bus services, ahead of the next stage of works to create a world-class gateway to the city and to significantly improve the main entrance to Leeds City Station.

Preliminary works on Bishopgate Street and Neville Street, near to the station, began three weeks ago, with the aim of creating a safer and more pedestrian-friendly environment outside one of the busiest stations in the north of England.

Alongside work to remove through-traffic from City Square which is due to start later this year, and Boar Lane works nearing completion, the overall impact will be an even safer place to live and work, and an even more attractive and vibrant destination to visit.

This will also help boost the city’s economy, attract more investment into Leeds, and put local communities within easier reach of jobs and opportunities.

At the same time Leeds City Council is also improving the road network outside the city, so people can get around easily without travelling through the city centre.

Bishopgate Street and Neville Street have both been reduced to single lanes in recent weeks to allow for preliminary works to be carried out ahead of major improvements to the main entrance to Leeds City Station, as part of the Sustainable Travel Gateway scheme.

A new temporary bus lane is being introduced on Friday (17 June) which will extend the existing bus lane on the A653 into the city centre onto Victoria Road and Neville Street, reducing delays for buses travelling into the city centre while also making it easier for cyclists to travel along the route.

Leeds city councillor Helen Hayden, Executive Member for Infrastructure and Climate, said: “Removing through-traffic from City Square is a long-held ambition of ours, and already it feels less car-dominated and a more inviting place for pedestrians and cyclists. Delivering these works will make the city centre even safer, and more friendly and inviting for all who live, work or visit.

“The works outside the station are also needed sooner rather than later if we are to accommodate the continuing increase in passenger numbers at the railway station.

“Residents and businesses have told us that they want these improvements made as quickly as possible, as part of the Transport Conversation.  But that does mean there will be some disruption to journeys over the short-term, and in some cases these transformational improvements will mean that some routes will permanently change.

“We are working hard to keep any disruption to a minimum and we thank people for their patience. In the meantime we are encouraging motorists to plan ahead to reduce any effect these works have on their journeys, to consider whether there is an alternative route or method of travel, and keep a look out for further updates.”

Plan ahead: Avoid disruption travelling on roads near Leeds City Station

Motorists travelling into Leeds are being reminded to plan ahead due to the ongoing works, either by planning their journeys in advance or considering alternative ways to travel.

This could include:

  • Using Park and Ride schemes such as our successful sites at Stourton, Elland Road and Temple Green.
  • Travelling by bus or rail. Customers can plan a journey by public transport using Moovit.
  • Cycling or walking into the city.
  • Motorists who have no option other than to drive should consider travelling outside of peak times where possible, or use alternative routes into the city such as using Junction 4 of the M621 instead of Junction 3, and also Junction 2, which is likely to be affected by ongoing works on the Armley Gyratory.

map of alternative routes has been produced along with directions to a number of key destinations across the city centre, which all avoid using Junction 3 of the M621 and the route past the railway station.

The dedicated webpage www.leeds.gov.uk/planahead contains details of ongoing works around the city centre. Visitors can also sign up to receive regular email updates.

Leeds Station Sustainable Travel Gateway

The preliminary works on Neville Street and Bishopgate Street come ahead of the £39.5m Leeds Station Sustainable Travel Gateway scheme later this year, which will see both New Station Street and Bishopgate Street transformed into safer and more pedestrian-friendly spaces.

With the number of rail passengers using the station forecast to increase significantly over the next 20 years, the works are necessary to meet capacity demands and make sure that people can enter, exit and wait for services safely to meet Network Rail’s security standards.

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