Kingsway Business Park gets dedicated tram stop

THE huge 420-acre Kingsway Business Park in Rochdale is to get a dedicated Metrolink stop as part of a package of new transport measures agreed by councillors on Friday.

Transport For Greater Manchester’s new Capital Projects and Policy sub-committee agreed a £2.5m package today to fund the stop, giving a direct public transport link to the sprawling site. It has also agreed changes to the

Rochdale town centre line which will avoid a five-month delay and substantial extra costs.

The line will now run on a single track section through the junction of Drake Street and Smith Street before returning to two tracks on the approach to the town centre.

A review of the designs found that a twin-track approach from the train station to the Smith Street stop would require significant structural improvements, or replacement of, Wellington Bridge over the River Roche.

Councillor Roger Jones, chair of the Capital Projects and Policy sub-committee, said: “Today is a great day for Rochdale’s new Metrolink line, which will provide frequent, high quality services.

“Providing a stop at Kingsway Business Park will no doubt spark a great deal of interest from businesses looking for a well-connected, regional site.

“It will take the development to the next level, so I’m delighted we’ve been able to work with Rochdale Council to agree funding.”

Meanwhile, TFGM also announced it was introducing a new rating system to benchmark firms who apply to run subsidised bus services.

Cllr Jones said that 20% of bus fares in the region are currently being subsidised, costing Greater Manchester’s taxpayers £40m a year.

“We are launching this new supplier rating system to introduce an assessment of ‘quality’ into the process of awarding our bus contracts,” he said.

Click here to sign up to receive our new South West business news...