A study to look at improving links to Leeds Bradford Airport has been ordered by the Department for Transport.
Transport links to the airport have already been included in a Treasury list of six “notorious and longstanding road congestion hotspots.” A Treasury report – Investing in Britain’s Future – which was published last year, said further feasibility studies were needed into the six hotspots.
Now the DfT has appointed transport planners WSP, in partnership with Parsons Brinckerhoff, to carry out a study to examine options for improving connections.
The study, which is expected to be finished by early August, aims to identify ways of ‘substantially’ improving the links to surrounding areas. The study will take account of intentions to ‘grow’ the airport and will identify ways of improving ‘surface access’ to help it achieve its aim.
It will look at roads, public transport and “other sustainable modes.” WSP says consultation and liaison with local authorities and key stakeholders will underpin the study.
WSP project director Adrian Kemp said: “We will be drawing on the knowledge and expertise of stakeholders, examining all previous work and proposals and identifying new options in order to come to a recommendation for improving connectivity in this crucial area. Unlocking these constraints has the potential to significantly improve the wider transport network, keeping the UK on the move and stimulating economic growth both nationally and locally.”
In 2012 local campaigners warned that gridlock on roads near the airport could lead to serious consequences.
Dr David Ingham, Chairman of Wharfedale and Airedale Review Development, spoke out after serious traffic congestion on roads near the airport. Dr Ingham said: “Imagine a serious plane accident and fire at the airport. How long would it take for emergency vehicles to come to the airport’s assistance? There would without doubt be serious consequences.”