Plans to transform transport in Halifax unveiled

Early designs showing how Halifax rail station could be transformed into a world-class facility, improve access to the town and boost economic growth will be discussed at Calderdale Council’s Cabinet meeting on Monday (19 March).

As one of the main gateways into Calderdale, the proposed major upgrade to the station and surrounding area would bring far-reaching benefits to the borough.

Inclusive growth

Cllr Keith Wakefield, Chair of West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Transport Committee said: “This is just the kind of scheme, generating inclusive growth to the local economy and connecting people with new opportunities and jobs, that we established the £1bn West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund to deliver.

“Improving the welcome to the town provided by its busy station is part of a joint programme of works between west Yorkshire Combined Authority and Calderdale Council that will transform Halifax and the rest of the district.”

First impression

Cllr Barry Collins, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Strategy, said: “The massive amount of regeneration in Halifax and across Calderdale is putting our area on the national and international map, so it’s important to have an excellent train station – it’s often people’s first impression of the town and their link to our fantastic facilities.

“Around two million people use Halifax train station every year, and we have an ambitious target to see 50% more rail trips in 2026 than in 2016. Improving the station and the way people access it would help meet future demand. It would also improve the travel experience, create a more attractive environment and boost the local economy by increasing investment, jobs and tourism.

“This is part of Calderdale’s Next Chapter, which will see major developments in transport, public spaces and business premises.”

Growth Deal

The transformation of Halifax train station is part of the Council’s work to invest in transport infrastructure through the West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund, and the Leeds City Region Growth Deal - a £1 billion package of Government investment through the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to accelerate growth and create jobs across Leeds City Region.

The concept design being recommended for Cabinet approval includes:

  • a proposed new station at platform level;
  • a transport interchange combining all modes of travel to and from the station;
  • replacement of the station access bridge with an attractive landscaped entrance to the new station;
  • a new car park and drop-off, pick-up and taxi points;
  • re-opening the third platform in front of the ‘1855 building’;
  • new areas for shops or food and drink businesses.

Accessibility for everyone, including step-free access, is a key feature of the design, as well as the blend of old and new. The proposals include a modern glass façade for the main building, combined with preserved historic features such as the existing stone arches supporting the access bridge.

Approval of the station’s early design on Monday would enable the Council to seek funding to prepare more detailed designs would be prepared by 2019 and consulted on during spring 2019. Subject to further approvals, it is anticipated that construction could start in 2021.

Once-in-a-lifetime 

Alongside the station plans, the Council is working on a £40 million project for the once-in-a-lifetime transformation of Halifax town centre as part of the A629 Phase 2 West Yorkshire Plus Transport Fund work to reduce congestion on the route between Halifax and Huddersfield and to boost the local economy.

Proposed improvements include better cycling facilities and footpaths; improved bus/rail interchange and on-street infrastructure; easier, safer and more enjoyable pedestrian access to shops and leisure facilities; a public space next to The Piece Hall, new Central Library and Archives and Square Chapel Arts Centre to create a safer, more pleasant space for pedestrians and people arriving by train and bus; better links to Dean Clough; and much more.

Find out more about Calderdale's next chapter (opens in new tab).

15 Mar 2018

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