Wakefield weighs up transport hub

Plans for a £10 million transport interchange in Castleford were submitted to Wakefield Metropolitan District Council this week.

West Yorkshire public transport body Metro and Aedas Architects submitted the proposal to improve links between Castleford's bus and rail services.

Arup and CDM Planning Supervisors are also part of the project team.

The 1,700m2 scheme is key to the town centre development strategy and a major project in the local transport plan. The bus station could be relocated to sit next to the railway station. The interchange would feature a waiting area, a cafe, newsagent, cycle lockers and digital closed-circuit television.

The plan also involves building a link road and pedestrian works to Carlton Street. Metro and the district council have together made a successful bid to the Department for Transport for £14.5 million in provisional funding for land acquisition, design and construction.

Wakefield project leader for regeneration Nigel Stake commented: "This integrated facility is a key part of the regeneration planned for Castleford. It will contribute to the economic improvement of the area by acting as a catalyst for further development in the vicinity."

He added: "It will also enhance the main gateways into the town centre, improving its accessibility and attractiveness as a shopping destination."

The scheme is one of several being pushed forward to help revitalise the former mining town. Plans for the first phase of the town centre regeneration, including 4,645m2 of shop space and a 58-bedroom hotel, were approved earlier this year.

A £120 million plan to transform the Lambsons' chemical works with 1,400 homes and 4ha of open space received a resolution to grant planning consent in May. Other schemes include relocating the outdoor market and a footbridge over the River Aire.

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