South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE) welcomes the Department for Transport’s (DfT) announcement for the new High Speed Rail (HSR) network to serve the Sheffield City Region.
DfT confirmed that a station will be built just off the M1 motorway (junction 34), near Meadowhall, as part of the second phase of HSR. Services to the Sheffield City Region (SCR) are due to commence in 2033, but the hard work begins now to make sure that everything is up and ready.
The first and second phases connect the SCR to London, Birmingham and the West Midlands, the East Midlands, and Leeds. Sheffield City Region covers South Yorkshire and parts of north Derbyshire and north Nottinghamshire, including Worksop, Chesterfield and Retford.
The city region’s high speed station will bring significant benefits to the region’s economy. Research carried out on behalf of SYPTE and Metro (West Yorkshire PTE) showed that High Speed Rail services in Yorkshire would generate an estimated £2.3 billion of local economic benefits on top of the predicted £60 billion of national transport benefits.
By linking the Leeds City Region, the Sheffield City Region and the East Midlands, HSR would connect an area of 6.7 million people and 3 million jobs.
Journeys from Sheffield to London will also be reduced from 2hrs 7mins to 1hr 15mins.
Whilst quicker journey times will bring the capital and the Midlands nearer, opening up new markets and business and job opportunities, the capacity on existing rail lines that HSR will free up is also hugely important to accommodate the growing rail demand in the Sheffield City Region.
Although it will be some time before HSR services begin operations to Sheffield City Region, the benefits could be felt well before then as businesses grow and relocate to station locations along the route.
The M1 location is expected to give a huge boost to the surrounding area, as well as across wider South Yorkshire.
Cllr Mick Jameson, Chair of South Yorkshire Integrated Transport Authority said: “This announcement is the result of a lot of hard work by people across the Sheffield City Region and beyond and is hugely important for our future economic competitiveness.
“The M1 location is already served by bus, Supertram and local rail services. It will help to spread the benefits of HSR throughout the region, using the transport links which have ready access to much of South Yorkshire. It will offer much improved connections to London and the other cities in the Midlands and North. It will also open up many new possibilities for new services to places not currently served when capacity is freed up on the existing network.”
For more information visit syltp.org.uk/hs2