Leeds, Leeds Star
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New expert advisory panel ‘joins the conversation’ on the future of Leeds transport

A new panel has met in Leeds for the first time to advise on the future of transport strategy in the city.

The advisory panel set up by Leeds City Council is the next element of the transport conversation which is the biggest-ever discussion on transport strategy held with residents, businesses and visitors in the city.

Chaired by Director of Strategy for Transport for the North Nigel Foster, the advisory panel includes leading transport experts and senior figures from transport bodies and organisations, along with representatives from the worlds of business, education, planning, accessibility, equalities and campaign groups.

The panel will meet again at the end of this month and then quarterly to advise and review the development of the long-term strategy for Leeds. The panel members have all agreed to ‘join the conversation’ adding their voices to the more than 7,500 responses received to the current survey running at www.leeds.gov.uk/transportconversation which ends tomorrow (Friday 11 November).

The conversation began following the government’s decision to turn down the proposed New Generation Transport (NGT) scheme for Leeds in May, but with £173.5million of funding for the scheme being retained to invest in public transport in the city.

The council responded by hosting a transport summit in June attended by leading transport bodies and key stakeholders, followed by the survey which has been running since the start of August.

The work of the panel adds to community forum and workshop sessions held across the city to discuss all aspects of transport in Leeds. Sessions have also taken place with key stakeholders and special interest groups as well as access and equality groups, disability, youth and older people’s forums.

Leader of Leeds City Council Councillor Judith Blake said:

“We are delighted this panel of industry experts and representatives from a wide range of fields and transport user groups have agreed to give up their time to join the conversation and offer their views and guidance on the long-term transport strategy for Leeds.

“Together with everyone else who has offered their views, their thoughts will be invaluable in helping to shape the future of transport in our city. Having more than six thousand responses to the survey has been great but we need as many more people as we can to tell us what they think before the survey run ends tomorrow.”

Chair of the Leeds transport conversation advisory panel Nigel Foster said:

“I am delighted to have been invited to join the Leeds transport conversation and chair the advisory panel that has been established to review and challenge the emerging transport strategy for the city. The panel has been specially selected for its broad range of specific experience, bringing together recognised leaders in the different fields of transport from across the UK. There are two principal areas that the council is seeking advice from the panel: how best to utilise the £173.5million originally allocated for transport improvements and also, to advise on the approach and development of the medium and longer term transport strategy.

“The panel will work with the council to take on board the views from the transport conversation, and success will be measured by achieving a step change in the public transport provision for residents, businesses and visitors to Leeds.”

The survey can be accessed online in all council libraries and one-stop centres, while views can also be sent on email to leedstransport@leeds.gov.uk. Background information including the current vision for transport in Leeds can be seen via the webpages at www.leeds.gov.uk/transportconversation while the conversation is also taking place online using the twitter hashtag #LeedsTransport

Leeds City Council is also currently consulting on framework proposals for the development of South Bank Leeds. To take part visit www.southbankleeds.co.uk

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