Wakefield city centre's Kirkgate roundabout scheme is delivering bus service improvements

Cllrs Groves and Box planting one of the trees on the Kirkgate roundaboutA £6 million scheme to improve traffic flow on Wakefield city centre’s Kirkgate roundabout is having a positive effect on bus services, according to early indications.

Initial surveys have also shown that since the work was finished more pedestrians are using the signal controlled crossings to cross the roundabout, than previously used the subways.

Transformed

Opened in August 2018, and funded through the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund, the scheme involved major highway improvements including the installation of new signals. The area’s former pedestrian subways, which were built in the 1970s, have been transformed to hold excess storm water, and replace with improved paving and crossings. The junction at Park Street was re-opened to provide better access for vehicles travelling to and from Kirkgate Station and the surrounding residential area.

This week, Wakefield Council Leader, Cllr Peter Box CBE and Cllr Kim Groves, Chair of the west Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Committee planted an avenue of trees, which are part of the landscaping for the £6 million scheme to improve the area pedestrians, cyclists, buses and motorists.

Successful

Cllr Peter Box CBE, Leader of Wakefield Council, said: “We are really pleased to see that the work we have undertaken has been successful.

“With the right infrastructure now in place we can expect to see even greater benefits to the district. It could lead to new investment and development which would be a further boost to the local economy.”

Early indications

Cllr Kim Groves, Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Committee, said: "I am pleased to see that early indications are showing that traffic is flowing well through the signal-controlled Kirkgate roundabout and that the bus companies are noticing an improvement on services that use the route. And, we understand the scheme has improved pedestrian access in Wakefield city centre's Kirkgate area.

"By reducing congestion and improving traffic flow, the Kirkgate Improvement scheme will help support local development and investment to create new, good-quality jobs from which local people can benefit.”

Growth Deal

The scheme has been financed through the Combined Authority’s 'West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund', part of the Leeds City Region Growth Deal, a £1billion package of Government investment through the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) will accelerate growth and create jobs across Leeds City Region.

In recent years there have been other major improvements to the Kirkgate area with the refurbishment of the train station and the opening of the new West Yorkshire History Centre which houses the West Yorkshire archives.

08 Feb 2019

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