Consultation set to explore improvements to connectivity and growth plans at Leeds Bradford Airport

Further public consultations and engagements are set to take place in regards to proposals on the improvement of transport connectivity to Leeds Bradford Airport and in the north west of the city.

Set to be released early next year, the proposals will look at ways to enhance road and rail access to the airport to support its future growth, as well as job creation in the area and addressing the current congestion issues in north west Leeds.

Leeds Bradford Airport supports over 5,000 jobs and contributes £336m to the city region economy each year. The airport is one of the fastest-growing in the UK, with passenger numbers predicted by the Department for Transport to rise from four million in 2017 to 7.1 million by 2030 and over nine million by 2050.

In order to support this expected growth, Leeds City Council has worked with West Yorkshire Combined Authority, Leeds Bradford Airport and key stakeholders to put forward a range of investment proposals.

These include improving road access through one of three options, building a new LBA Link Route a) From the A65 running along the eastern side of the airport before joining the A658; b) From the A65 running to the south west of the airport before joining the A658; or c) Upgrading existing junctions on the A65 and A658 in Rawdon and Yeadon along with localised road widening.

A new airport parkway rail station is also being proposed. Located on the existing Leeds-Harrogate Line, the rail link will include a short connecting spur road to the airport to provide a shuttle bus connection similar to that at Luton Airport.

Finally, the council has explored releasing 36 hectares of land next to the airport for employment growth and job creation in north west Leeds.

All of the key details on the proposals to be considered together will be available in the consultation, to take place early in 2019.

Leeds City Council executive member for regeneration, transport and planning Councillor Richard Lewis said: “The latest figures from regional airports including Manchester show that 84% of passengers travel to the airport by car or taxi despite there being direct rail links.

“Therefore, as Leeds Bradford Airport continues to grow, it is vital that we look at ways to alleviate increased traffic on the road network in north west Leeds as well as plans for a rail connection.

“Leeds Bradford Airport is already a huge economic asset for the Leeds City Region and the link road and parkway station plans will form part of a further benefits package to support the local area by connecting to the proposed LBA Employment Hub. I would urge as many people as possible to take part in the upcoming public engagement so to help shape both schemes as they progress.”