The West Yorkshire Combined Authority is seeking ideas and experience from companies all over the world to develop a mass transit system for Leeds City Region.
As it stands, Leeds is the largest metropolitan area on the continent that doesn’t have an urban transit system.
Its population is currently approximately £3 million, and with an economy of £69.6 billion, Leeds is an area that would see great benefits from a mass transit system.
As such, the Combined Authority has started developing proposals for a system that would raise productivity, deliver growth and address climate change through encouragement of clean growth.
The Combined Authority is working alongside experts from the University of Huddersfield’s Institute for Railway Research and the Institute for Transport Studies at the University of Leeds; companies and consortia are being asked for their ideas regarding the latest technologies and techniques that could make this transport system a reality.
Manufacturers, suppliers, constructors, engineers, system developers and operators of urban transit systems across the globe are being sought out; from this, the Authority is looking to develop initial designs for an advanced mass transit system that can be delivered by 2033, ensuring Leeds City Region can benefit from major infrastructure investment, including HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail.
Organisations are being asked to consider systems with end-to-end routes of between 10km – 30km with frequent stops every kilometre or so; the vehicles are expected to allow for 200 to 300 people to get on and off at every stop, with an operational life of around 30 years.
Councillor Kim Groves, Chair of the Combined Authority’s Transport Committee, said this system is necessary for Leeds to achieve its economic potential.
“The Leeds City Region economy is forecast to grow rapidly in the coming years, creating thousands of new jobs.
“There is no doubt that if the Leeds City Region is going to achieve its full economic potential while at the same time meeting the ambitious environmental goals we have set ourselves, we need a modern mass transit system to connect people quickly and cleanly with areas of growth.”