Mayor and council leader want ‘vital’ land around station to be safeguarded

The Mayor of West Yorkshire and leader of Leeds City Council have written to the Prime Minister, urging him to ensure land around Leeds Central Railway Station continues to be safeguarded.

They note that Leeds Station is at capacity, and land to the south could provide space for expansion – boosting economic growth across West Yorkshire and improving reliability across the rail network in the North.

Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, said: “Failing to expand the capacity at Leeds Station would hold West Yorkshire and the North’s economy back for decades to come.

“We’re an economic powerhouse desperate to grow further – I’m calling on the Government to sit down and work with us to find a solution.

“Don’t force us to fight with one hand tied behind our back as we seek to create a better-connected North.”

Councillor James Lewis, leader of Leeds City Council, added: “The value of our city’s station to our economy as well as that of Yorkshire and the North cannot be overstated, and yet we are already approaching capacity.

“We must protect the limited opportunities we have to ensure the station and railway infrastructure in central Leeds can continue to grow in order to meet ever-increasing passenger demand and not become a bottleneck for other significant new schemes such as the welcome new station for Bradford and Northern Powerhouse Rail.

“It is vital that safeguarding restrictions on land around the station are extended until the current study is completed, to help ensure that opportunities to better connect our city with the wider region and the rest of the country are not lost through short-sighted decision making.”