North set to benefit from over £600m rail network investment
Over £600m worth of government investment in Northern rail services has been confirmed by the Department for Transport.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has confirmed the funding for rail networks in the North, alongside the launch of a new Northern Transport Acceleration Council.
The new government funding includes £589m to kickstart work on the Transpennine main line between Leeds, Huddersfield and Manchester, and follows the announcement of a £20m investment in infrastructure renewals on the Tyne and Wear Metro.
Transport Secretary and Northern Powerhouse Minister Grant Shapps commented: “People across the North rightly expect action, progress and ambition, and this government is determined to accelerate improvements as we invest billions to level up the region’s infrastructure.
“We are determined to build back better at pace, and this new council will allow us to engage collectively and directly with elected northern leaders to build the vital projects the region is crying out for.”
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen commented: “This new body will not only give leaders like me another avenue to press our transport case to ministers. DfT staff based in the North will also see first-hand the challenges and opportunities we face, and the improvements and projects needed to unlock further growth and prosperity, with the ability to act on these.
“It’s also great to see more funding for the critical upgrades necessary to the Transpennine Route, which are desperately needed to bring about transformational change across the network.
“This will help increase capacity, reliability and connectivity between Redcar and Middlesbrough to York, Leeds and Manchester, giving our passengers, businesses and, ultimately, freight services the links they deserve.”
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