Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- improve bus journey reliability and journey times;
- improve accessibility and safety along the route;
- reduce congestion and improve air quality;
- encourage healthier and more environmentally friendly methods of transport;
- improve and enhance existing walking and cycling facilities; and
- help achieve Leeds City Council’s commitment to net-zero carbon by 2030.
What is the A64?
The A64 is a key radial route into Leeds, carrying long distance traffic from the wider Leeds City Region, as well as local traffic in east Leeds. The A64 is a busy, high frequency bus route, with around 30 buses travelling in each direction per hour.
Who is delivering the scheme?
The scheme is being delivered by Leeds City Council in partnership with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority. The Combined Authority works with local councils and businesses to ensure that everyone in our region benefits from a strong, successful economy and a modern, accessible transport network. To learn more about the Combined Authority, visit: https://www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/.
Connecting Leeds is part of Leeds City Council and aims to transform travel in Leeds for those that live, work and study in or visit the city. Connecting Leeds is helping to deliver the A64 Improvement Scheme, alongside a range of other city-wide improvement schemes that will support the development and strategic growth of Leeds. To find out more, click here.
How is the scheme funded and how much does it cost?
The A64 Improvement Scheme is funded by the Transforming Cities Fund (TCF). The Leeds City Region TCF is a major programme of investment that aims to deliver transformational new transport infrastructure in West Yorkshire. It is being delivered by the Combined Authority in partnership with local authorities and is funded through £317 million from the Department for Transport (DfT), plus local match funding of up to £140 million.
In March 2020, £7 million was allocated for the A64 Improvement Scheme. A further £15 million was allocated in July 2020 via devolved funding by the Combined Authority, for the delivery of a potential Park and Ride scheme.
TCF’s ambition is to provide an accessible, attractive and cleaner alternative to car journeys in the Leeds City Region. Communities across Bradford, Calderdale, Craven, Harrogate, Kirklees, Leeds, Selby, Wakefield and York are set to benefit from the TCF schemes, which include new or improved bus and rail stations, cycling and walking infrastructure, and new Park and Rides.
What are the aims of the scheme?
Our proposals aim to:
How is the A64 Improvement scheme linked to other transport projects in Leeds?
A number of city-wide transport improvement schemes are being progressed alongside the A64 Improvement Scheme, aiming to enhance and upgrade transport infrastructure in Leeds. These schemes will complement proposals to improve the A64, enabling better connections in the region and helping achieve major strategic growth for the city.
Examples of these wider improvements include the East Leeds Extension (ELE), the East of Leeds Orbital Route (ELOR) and the A6120 Outer Ring Road Enhancements. More information about these improvement schemes can be found on Exhibition Board 4 in the virtual consultation room.
- new bus lanes to improve bus priority, where required;
- moving some bus stops into new bus laybys to reduce delays for passing buses and improve bus journey reliability;
- new and upgraded junctions, where traffic lights detect traffic and prioritise buses to reduce delays for buses;
- new and upgraded bus shelters with real time information for passengers;
- a potential bus only right turn lane at Seacroft Avenue to reduce journey times; and
- new traffic lights at the A64 and York Road Junction to improve bus journey time reliability.
Why are improvements to the A64 necessary?
The route is a busy, high frequency bus corridor. Congestion is common at peak periods, meaning buses are experiencing more delays, leading to longer journey times for passengers, which reduces the reliability of the local bus network.
Congestion is likely to worsen due to higher travel demands as a result of forecasted growth and planned future developments in Leeds. The A64 Improvement Scheme is therefore required to address delays on the route and to provide a targeted solution for commuters. The proposed improvements to bus priority and walking and cycling facilities are also key enablers for the Council’s target of becoming carbon neutral by 2030.
How will the scheme improve bus journeys on the A64?
The types of interventions proposed to improve bus journeys along the A64 include:
resurfacing and lane widening of the existing guided busway (a dedicated track used to steer guided buses), so that it can be used by all buses and two buses can pass each other;
To view our plans to improve bus priority on the A64 in more detail, click here.
What are the benefits of the scheme?
The proposed scheme will improve journeys on the A64 for local people and users of the route, and create new links between communities. Buses will be given priority at key junctions, and walking and cycling facilities will be upgraded and enhanced, with proposals such as footpath widening and additional crossings making journeys more pleasant. These proposals will reduce delays and congestion which will help to improve air quality, contributing towards the Council’s environmental objectives.
Proposals to improve bus, walking and cycling journeys will also encourage the use of sustainable transport modes that are affordable and accessible to everyone. The plans will also promote city-wide connectivity by connecting to and extending existing cycling and walking networks.
What assessments have informed the proposals?
To help develop the scheme, we conducted an assessment of the route to identify key problems and opportunities. Information such as existing journey times and collision data was gathered and initial feedback about walking and cycling in Leeds was collected through the Connecting Leeds Commonplace website and through discussions with key stakeholders. This data was then analysed and used to identify key areas where bus priority and walking and cycling measures could be enhanced or upgraded to improve safety, accessibility, and bus journey times along the route.
What is the A64 Park and Ride scheme?
Alongside the A64 Improvement scheme, we are also exploring the opportunity to provide a new bus-based Park and Ride site. Proposals for a potential Park and Ride facility are still at an early stage of development, but the currently preferred site is located at Whinmoor Grange.
Plans for a potential Park and Ride scheme will complement the A64 proposals, and align with the emerging Connecting Leeds Transport Strategy, which is promoting an increase in sustainable travel, including public transport, walking and cycling. More detailed information on the development of a Park and Ride site at this location will be provided later in the year at a separate public consultation, and feedback will be sought on the proposals.
How will the proposals address the Leeds Climate Emergency?
The A64 Improvement Scheme is one of a number of city-wide transport improvement projects that will help achieve the Council and the Combined Authority’s vision of becoming carbon net zero.
Proposals to improve bus priority measures will promote a shift away from reliance on cars, and towards public transport, walking and cycling. This will reduce congestion and improve air quality by encouraging more environmentally friendly methods of travel.
How do your plans impact local green spaces and trees?
We do not currently anticipate any significant road widening, which will limit potential impacts on green spaces and trees.
Our proposals also include landscape improvements along the A64, aiming to enhance the local environment and improve local green space, providing more pleasant journeys for those walking and cycling. These proposals include converting the A64 York Road carriageway adjacent to the Somerville Green Junction to greenspace.
We will have a better understanding of the scheme’s impact on local green spaces and trees following further studies undertaken as part of the detailed design stage of the project. However, where we are aware of an impact on local green space, we are committed to providing replacement green space as close to the removed sections as possible.
What are the timescales for construction?
Construction is anticipated to start in winter 2022 and is due to complete in summer 2023. Local residents and road users will be notified in advance of any works along the route. An anticipated timescale for the construction of the Park and Ride facility will be provided at the dedicated Park & Ride public consultation due to take place later this year.
How will construction work impact other city links and journey times? How will disruption be managed?
Due to the nature of the construction work needed to build the scheme, unfortunately some disruption is inevitable. However, we will aim to minimise this by coordinating with other projects planned in the city and communicating details with residents and road users well in advance, so that people can plan their journeys accordingly. Work will also be completed in phases to minimise disruption.
As part of the construction preparation, a communications plan will be produced to outline how potential impacts will be communicated to the public.
How has COVID-19 impacted bus travel patterns, and is it still worth delivering this scheme?
Clearly traffic patterns have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and we will continue to monitor the impact on traffic numbers across the corridor and city. Current figures for bus use indicate that weekend recovery has been stronger than weekday, with morning and afternoon peaks around 50% of pre-pandemic levels. Weekend bus use is up to 70-80% of pre-March 2020 levels. It is too early at this stage to say what the long term effects will be as many people are still working from home, but we expect to start to get a clearer picture once full lockdown measures are removed and schools go back in September.
We believe there is benefit in continuing to provide improvements to public transport, walking and cycling to provide benefits in terms of congestion, air quality, health and wellbeing etc. We want to ensure we have efficient and affordable transport options for people to be well connected to employment opportunities, education, leisure and community facilities.
Find out more and provide your feedback
Where can I find more information on the scheme?
To see our proposals in more detail, you can visit our Virtual Consultation Room online at A64.consultation.ai. Here you can look through our consultation materials, including maps of the scheme, and fill out our response form.
We are also hosting an online event on Wednesday 30 June 2021 at 6pm. Our team will talk through the proposed improvements and answer your questions about the project. You can join the event online at A64.consultation.ai.
When can I take part?
The public consultation is open from Monday 21 June until 11.59pm on Sunday 25 July 2021.
Will I be able to attend an in-person event?
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we are not able to run in-person events. However, we will be running an event online on Wednesday 30 June 2021 at 6pm to present the proposals and give you an opportunity to ask questions about the scheme. You can join the event at A64.consultation.ai.
How can I provide my feedback?
To have your say on the proposals, you can complete our online survey on this consultation webpage. You will be able to provide your feedback until 11.59pm on 25 July 2021. If you have any questions about the scheme or the proposals, you can also submit a question using the Q&A tool on the bottom of this webpage.
How will my feedback be used?
All feedback gathered from the public consultation will be analysed and will be used to inform the development of the proposals where possible.
Will there be another consultation or further chance to give my views?
There will be a public consultation for the potential Park and Ride facility later this year. This will provide you with an opportunity to find out more about the Park and Ride proposals and provide your feedback on these in particular. As the project progresses, there will be further public engagement for you to learn more and have your say.
How can I contact the project team?
You can contact us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will seek a reply for your question.
You can also call 0113 245 7676 (Metroline Contact Centre) where the phone operators can pass on a message.