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The role of the Transport Planning Policy Team is to implement the Local Transport Plan (LTP) for Merseyside within the St Helens area. The LTP is a joint plan required by central government and is produced by the six Merseyside local authorities and Merseytravel, the integrated transport authority for Merseyside.
The LTP sets out the council's objectives, strategies and policies for transport. It also details the transport schemes that will be delivered, together with the performance indicators that will be used to monitor progress.
The current LTP is the third plan for Merseyside and became active in April 2011. The plan provides a long-term strategy for how to improve transport in Merseyside up until 2024.
This sets out the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s vision for transport. It states delivery priorities by 2025 and 2040. It links closely with the city region’s Transforming Cities Funding programme, which is part of the Strategic Investment Fund.
The plan provides a single source of information on adopted transport policy, based on current plans and priorities, in light of the Metro Mayor’s vision and the combined authority’s investment priorities. It reflects new funding sources (e.g. the Strategic Investment Fund) and also the existence of new structures and priorities such as High Speed 2, Transport for the North and Northern Powerhouse Rail.
The Liverpool City Region Combined Authority has secured £172.5 million in capital grant from the Transforming Cities Fund (TCF) for local transport investment over a five-year period.
The aim of the fund is to support programmes of interlinking interventions, which will transform sustainable transport connectivity in key commuter routes in major city regions.
The funding forms part of the wider Strategic Investment Fund.
The three priority themes for the funding are:
The way in which major transport schemes are administered has recently changed. The Department for Transport (DfT) has devolved funding for transport major schemes to local areas from 2015/16 in response to the Growth Plans that were developed by each Local Enterprise Partnership.
In July 2013, DfT announced that the Liverpool City Region was awarded a total of £23.79m from the Local Growth Fund to support the City Region's Major Transport Projects from 2015/16 to 2018/19. Following submission of the Liverpool City Region Growth Plan, it was announced that a further £232m was to be invested in the city region, of which £97.66m was allocated to agreed major transport schemes.
Within St.Helens there are currently three Major Transport Schemes being progressed:
1. Windle Island
The scheme would improve the current junction at Windle Island with an upgrade of the current signalling and junction layout.
The scheme would see the establishment of controlled left turn links, signalised pedestrian and cycling crossing facilities at the junction and installation of SCOOT traffic system to optimise capacity. The junction is a key strategic point in the Liverpool City Region road network, being the crossing point of the A570 and A580 East Lancs Road (one of the main routes into Knowsley and Liverpool), as well as the B5201 crossing the junction.
The junction exceeds capacity daily, especially during peak periods leading to congestion as well as delay for motorist/bus services and freight. The scheme is identified within the third Local Transport Plan for Merseyside and is on the Strategic Freight Network for Merseyside.
2. A570 Southern Employment Corridor
The A570 Southern Employment Corridor Improvement scheme delivers highway junction capacity improvements and supports sustainable transport. The scheme supports the Council's strategy to develop this corridor as one of two major employment zones within St.Helens. The scheme will see the implementation of measures at the three roundabout junctions along the southern corridor between St.Helens Town Centre and the M62 Motorway A570/Eurolink, A570/Elton Head Road and A570/Scorecross Road.
3. Newton-le-Willows Interchange
This interchange will see significant investment at the existing rail station to provide passengers with improved facilities, easier access and better links between local, regional and national transport. It will further build on the improvements to services following the electrification of the line between Liverpool and Manchester and the introduction of new rolling stock by Northern Rail.
The scheme will include:
Merseytravel is leading on the scheme and working closely with the Council, Network Rail and Northern Rail to ensure successful delivery.
For more detailed information on Major Transport schemes across the Liverpool City region, please visit the Merseytravel website.