Friday, March 5, 2010

News: Rotherham-Sheffield BRT moves closer


A business case for a Bus Rapid Transit scheme designed to improve connectivity between Rotherham and Sheffield is set to be submitted to the Department for Transport.

Rotherham and Sheffield Councils, the South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE) and South Yorkshire Integrated Transport Authority are all set to agree that the £76m scheme is a top priority and should now go forward for inclusion in the Government's list of potential transport schemes.

Consultation on the the proposed high-frequency, limited stop service between Sheffield and Rotherham has taken place on both its routes.

The £40m northern route would link Sheffield and Rotherham passing Meadowhall, the Lower Don Valley and Templeborough and would help to foster economic growth along the corridor by helping people access jobs and opportunities.

Crucially, the scheme provides an alternative all transport route which bypasses the congested M1 junction 34 South by providing a new section of highway beneath the Tinsley Viaduct.

The £36m southern route of the scheme would run from Sheffield city centre, along the Parkway to the proposed new development at Waverley and onto Rotherham Interchange.

The scheme includes a 1,000 space Park and Ride site at Waverley and a dedicated BRT lane inbound on Sheffield Parkway whilst maintaining existing road space for all other traffic. The scheme is also instrumental in providing a quality public transport offer for the recently approved Waverley New Community and Helical Governetz developments which will provide 4,000 new homes and 60,000 sq m of office space.

The two routes will use dedicated, high quality vehicles operating at a ten minute frequency which will be granted priority on the roads.

For the northern route it is hoped to make submission by March 31 with the southern route to follow.

Decisions are expected in December and work will need to take place on securing planning permission for aspects of the scheme and securing land through compulsory purchase orders. Work is set to start in 2013 with the first services beginning on the southern route in 2014 and the northern route in 2015.

David Brown, SYPTE Director General, said: "Bus Rapid Transit will be an important addition to our transport infrastructure between Rotherham and Sheffield. These schemes will provide sustainable transport to allow development in the Lower Don Valley and Waverley sites.

"Good public transport is essential to enable economic development and these schemes will enable jobs and houses to be developed in years to come."

BRT website



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