The Station Gateway scheme plans to make the area around Harrogate’s rail and bus stations more attractive and improve accessibility into the town centre by enhancing walking, cycling and bus infrastructure.
The project is part of a £42 million Transforming Cities Fund (TCF) investment within North Yorkshire, which will also see the station gateways in Selby and Skipton enhanced.
At a meeting of North Yorkshire Council’s executive on Tuesday, 30 May 2023, members will be asked to approve the submission of the full business case for the Harrogate scheme to the West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
This follows May’s meeting of Harrogate and Knaresborough’s area constituency committee, where a majority voted in favour of progressing the project. Members shared their views on the necessary traffic regulation orders (TROs) required for the scheme on James Street and Station Parade.
The Harrogate and Knaresborough’s area constituency committee, agreed the following motion, in support
This committee believes that Harrogate needs a vibrant, prosperous, safe, attractive, accessible, healthier and sustainable town centre and would welcome further investment in it to achieve that goal through a Gateway scheme, subject to the following conditions:
- That the genuine concerns of individuals and groups continue to be listened to, debated and responded to where possible within the constraints of the scheme funding.
- That the ACC has a meaningful role in the implementation of the scheme, including the above mentioned conversations, and that a full report on progress is received at its meeting in the Autumn.
- That a rigorous monitoring system for expected and actual impact on traffic flows, the environmental, active travel take-up and businesses in the area of the scheme is put in place pre-shovel and made open and transparent from day one.
North Yorkshire Council’s executive member for highways and transport, Cllr Keane Duncan, said:
The Harrogate scheme represents a landmark investment, aiming to rejuvenate the town centre, support businesses and encourage people to travel more sustainably.
The recent area committee vote showed significant, cross-party support for the scheme from local councillors. The majority recognised the importance of securing this £11.2 million investment and the transformative impact the project could have.
We have responded to councillors’ feedback by pledging to review the Odeon roundabout design prior to final submission and to consider key junctions outside of the scope of the Gateway project (Ripon Road/King’s Road/Cheltenham Parade) to further limit congestion.
The full business case submission would represent a huge step forward for the scheme, enabling us to stay on track to start work in winter 2023.
Input and oversight provided by local councillors and engagement with town centre businesses will be incredibly valuable as the project proceeds, and we will soon provide more detailed plans for this.
- A key element of the scheme is a revised road lay-out on Station Parade. The northern end would be made one-way southbound to provide space for a two-way segregated cycle route and bus lane to facilitate quicker entry into the bus station.
- It would see the pedestrianisation to the eastern section of James Street in line with Cambridge Street, as well as alterations to the East Parade roundabout to improve cycle connectivity.
- The public realms would be transformed around Station Square and to the north of Victoria multi-storey car park.
- Three public consultations were carried out for the scheme. The third round attracted nearly double the responses of the previous consultations, resulting in 2,044 surveys and more than 5,000 individual comments.
Most respondents agreed the proposals would make the town centre more attractive to residents and visitors, have a positive impact on business and encourage active travel, while support for the project overall was split equally between positive and negative.
The full business case is expected to be submitted in September, with a decision in late autumn. Work could then begin by the end of the year if the scheme is approved by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
Find more information about the Transforming Cities Fund programme at www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/TCF