NEWS ROUNDUP: West Yorkshire transport funding
25/10/21 | Leeds local news - West Yorkshire transport | Plans to develop a mass transit system linking West Yorkshire’s cities and towns begin after the Government announced the region will get £830m to spend on transport.
Last month the West Yorkshire Combined Authority submitted its £920 million bid for a five-year City Region Sustainable Transport Settlement to the government.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced that he’s giving West Yorkshire £830 million to develop its integrated transport system.
The Authority is waiting to hear the specific details of the funding, but hopes that it can start developing its plans for a mass transit system and progress plans to massively improve the bus network with bus priority and more zero-emission electric buses plus more frequent and reliable services. Details of the mass transit system were announced earlier this year.
Although routes have not been finalised, it would likely include a mass transit interchange in Bradford city centre, with a line linking the city to Leeds. There would be stops in Heckmondwike, Cleckheaton, Junction 26 of the M62, “South Bradford” (possibly Holme Wood) and Laisterdyke.
There would be additional stops in areas with existing rail stations such as Low Moor, Bradford Interchange and Bradford Forster Square and Pudsey.
The full network could eventually include a line linking Bradford to Baildon, Guiseley and Leeds Bradford Airport, one linking the city to Halifax, Elland and Brighouse and one linking Bradford to Dewsbury – as well as the direct Bradford to Leeds link.
As the Combined Authority aims to become zero carbon by 2038, some of the new funding could be used to get people to switch from private cars to public transport and to make more safe, green space for walking and cycling.
West Yorkshire’s Mayor, Tracy Brabin, welcomed the £830 million funding announcement. She said: “West Yorkshire bid for the upper limit of funding as set out by the Government, but our region needs even more than that if the government is committed to levelling up.
“As the Prime Minister said, it is indeed a disgrace that West Yorkshire is the only major region in Western Europe without a Metro system, so we desperately need the government to address years of underinvestment in transport in our region.
“We’re keen to get more details on this funding so we can start delivering a 21st century transport service.
“Our vision for a more accessible and inclusive transport system which helps us tackle the climate emergency is essential if we are to achieve levelling up.
“Everyone in our region has something to give and we want to make sure there’s fair access to jobs, education and training which means they can increase their skills and get better paid jobs.
“I welcome the £830 million but I will be pushing for much more. It’s good news though that the Government is finally giving us the boost which means we can start work on providing the transport system the people of West Yorkshire deserve.
“I’m grateful to all our region’s leaders for working so hard to deliver devolution, enabling us to be considered for this vital funding.”
(LDRS | Chris Young)
The backlog of repairs to council houses in Leeds could take up until next spring to clear, Leeds City Council has claimed.
A document published last week by the authority claimed the district still had around 6,000 outstanding repairs for its council housing stock, and that a lack of materials and skilled tradespeople were leading to “significant challenges”.
A senior council officer has now claimed that the backlog could last until next Spring, although any further Covid lockdown could cause it to carry on for even longer.
Adam Crampton, head of property management at Housing Leeds, told a meeting of Leeds City Council’s Environment Scrutiny Board: “At the moment we are projecting that it will take us to the first week in April to clear that backlog. But we would just like to caveat this with the winter period – we do not know what is going to happen with Covid rates in the city or nationally.
“That could have an impact if restrictions are introduced. At the moment we are projecting a date of April 1, but there are variables around that.
“It was always something that was going to happen. [During the pandemic] we did see an overall reduction of around 15 percent in the number of responsive repairs recorded.
“That’s not because the demand was going away, it was down potentially to people’s nervousness t reporting repairs.
“We are seeing that demand return. It’s been extremely challenging.”
According to the report, which board members had met to discuss, the repairs backlog had peaked at around 19,500 at the start of the pandemic.
It added repairs for areas such as plastering, joinery, plumbing and glazing were taking longer to complete.
Mr Crampton added: “The backlog of repairs is what we are deeming non-essential repairs. We look at a number of variables which allow us to assess whether a repair is essential, and any potential vulnerabilities to the customer is something we will look at.”
(LDRS | Richard Beecham)
Police in Norway were called to an apartment after reports of loud screaming - which turned out to be football fan celebrating a late Premiership goal.
Nik Whitley celebrated Leeds United's last-gasp penalty to grab a draw against Wolverhampton.
But it sparked calls to cops regarding excessive shouting at his home in Oslo.
Norwegian police arrived at the apartment in the Ensjø district of the capital at around 5pm on Saturday, they said.
Posting on Twitter, the local force said cops found a “cheerful and eager football supporter” who admitted to the loud noises in relation to the penalty kick.
The force said in a statement: "We have had a patrol on Ensjø after a report of loud screams from an apartment.
"The patrol came in contact with a cheerful and eager football supporter.
''He acknowledged a somewhat loud noise in connection with the penalty kick.
"We ended the visit and moved on."
Leeds United tweeted in response: "No officer, that’s just one of our fans celebrating!”
Nik tweeted: "Yep that was me."
He later added: "Hahaha! Is it bad I’m a little proud of that? Sorry for the disturbance Ensjø."
Rodrigo Moreno's spot kick in the fourth minute of stoppage time cancelled out Hwang Hee-Chan's first half opener at Elland Road.
(SWNS | Michael Ekman)
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