Progressing plans for town centre transformation

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Updated plans as part of work to transform Halifax town centre will be discussed by Calderdale Council’s Cabinet.

The A629 Phase 2 – Halifax town centre project is fully funded by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and aims to improve pedestrian and cycle access into and within Halifax town centre. It also includes an upgrade of the highway network around the town and supports economic development of brown field sites to the east of the town.

A number of high-quality improvements to the look and feel of the town centre would be introduced, including the proposed pedestrianisation of Market Street. A revised bus network would also be implemented, better connecting the rail and bus stations and improving on-street bus stop facilities.

The town’s transformation would also deliver positive benefits for active travel modes such as cycling and walking. Halifax would be one of the first towns in the UK to introduce improvements fully designed in line with new Government cycle infrastructure standards.

As part of the next steps for the project, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet will discuss the process of acquiring land needed for the improvement work, with proposed changes to the alignment of the scheme on Church Street to incorporate land from the recently demolished section of Deal Street warehouse.

Part of the warehouse needed to be demolished earlier this year due to structural issues meaning it was in danger of collapse. The A629 scheme previously incorporated land to the eastern side of Church Street, but plans have now been revised to use the western side to develop the empty space previously occupied by the warehouse.

Additional land is also required around the Broad Street area to allow for enhanced pedestrian crossing facilities. This would have minimal impact on the existing wide pavement area.

Members will be asked to note these amends to the original design and approve the use of Compulsory Purchase Orders if required. These would only be used as a last resort, as efforts will continue to negotiate land purchase settlements.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Strategy, Cllr Jane Scullion, said:

“The plans as part of Phase 2 of the A629 scheme will completely transform Halifax town centre, supporting improvements in the town’s historic heart as well as enhancing the highway network with a focus upon environment, accessibility, transport choice and economic opportunity.

“The scheme design has been carefully considered to maximise benefits and make the most of the available funding from the Combined Authority. These highway alignment changes would reduce the complexity of engineering works on Church Street by utilising the space that is now available.”

The project is fully funded through the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund, which was established in 2014 using the Leeds City Region Growth Deal – a £1 billion package of Government investment through the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to accelerate growth and create jobs across Leeds City Region.

West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund schemes are designed to increase housing, employment and economic growth across the Leeds City Region and include new and expanded highways, improved access corridors and junctions for pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles and enhanced provision of parking at rail stations and greater investment in public transport infrastructure.

For more information on the A629 project and other major improvements to transport, public spaces and business premises, visit link)

The item will be discussed at the meeting of Calderdale Council’s Cabinet on Monday 4 October at Halifax Town Hall from 6pm. The meeting will also be streamed online at link)