'33,000 jobs' on horizon for region as major rail scheme to Doncaster Sheffield airport takes shape

Business chiefs have taken a ‘major step’ forward by submitting a case to the Government which could deliver a new rail connection to Doncaster Sheffield Airport- creating more than 30,000 jobs.

By Sophie Wills
Thursday, 27th February 2020, 12:01 am
Updated Thursday, 27th February 2020, 12:05 am

With just 4.5 miles of new track required, the proposed GatewayEast Growth Hub Rail scheme will add high-speed electrified rail connectivity to the airport, alleviating congestion on the East Coast Mainline.

Submitting the plans, the Sheffield City Region, Doncaster Council and the Peel Group said the scheme will deliver 33,000 jobs in the north within the next ten years- 10,000 of them deliverable within five years.

They added that the proposals quadruple the number of people with airport access via a sustainable transport mode from 2.4 million to 9 million within a 90-minute rail journey.

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Artist's impression of the new ECML station.

The scheme will ‘reduce the need for 18,000 Trans Pennine journeys taken by car’, many of them through a national park, to the North West- ‘removing 80 million road miles to more distant airports, taking around 23,000 tonnes of CO2 off the UK’s road network’.

The submission today by the three partners seeks inclusion of the project in the Department for Transport Rail Network Enhancements Pipeline.

Dan Jarvis MBE MP Mayor of the Sheffield City Region said: “I am pleased that this critically important scheme has reached another key milestone with the submission to Government.

“The benefits to communities and businesses through connecting the country’s fastest growing regional airport to the national and regional rail network are huge. We have to make sure that we get people off our roads and onto sustainable public transport. This investment would help make that a reality.”

Footprint map of the ECML and proposed site for the Station hub

Robert Hough CBE, Chairman of Doncaster Sheffield Airport (DSA), said: “An East Coast Mainline station situated at DSA demonstrates exceptional value for money for the tax-payer with a 22:1 return on its £300m investment. Furthermore, this would be a strong signal to the North of the Government’s promise in levelling up. The return on investment from this scheme is greater than the forecast benefits of the entire Eastern leg of HS2 but delivering years in advance and fully complementary. It is essentially ‘shovel-ready’ and deliverable within five years.”