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Yorkshire Integrated Transport Authority (WYITA) Chairman Cllr
Chris Greaves said he was alarmed by news that the Government has
ordered that preparation work for a high-speed rail route to Leeds
be put "on hold".
"Independent research has already shown that high-speed
Yorkshire link could generate over £30bn of benefits," he
"This decision to delay preparation work for a link through
Yorkshire would be a blow to the whole of the east of England, from
East Anglia to Tyneside, and a setback to the ports of the Humber
and Harwich, which stand to benefit from the new route."
"Anything other than a Y-shaped network that takes in Yorkshire
would be wrong because by the time people had snaked backward and
forwards across the country to Yorkshire, any benefit of high-speed
travel would be lost," he continued. "Everyone would get off at
Research commissioned by Metro and South Yorkshire Passenger
Transport Executive (SYPTE) last year showed that over £30bn
of benefits could be generated from a high-speed rail network
serving Sheffield and Leeds. The report, produced by Arup with
economic specialist Volterra, stated that a high-speed Yorkshire
link could provide between £1.5bn and £3bn of
productivity benefits to the economy in addition to transport
benefits of around £29bn.
Metro and SYPTE have commissioned Arup and Volterra to develop
further evidence on the employment and other benefits of a direct
high-speed rail route to Yorkshire. Senior transport
representatives from West and South Yorkshire will be meeting in
early July to discuss the evidence provided by the further