Despite failing to gain funding from the government following a resounding ‘no’ vote in the Congestion Charge referendum in Greater Manchester in December, Great Manchester is to now get a £1.4bn transport fund from the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA) and government, in order to carry out a number of currently stalled transport projects across the region, as well as creating 21,000 new jobs.
This funding will now help with the following transport projects:
- Further Metrolink (tram line) extensions to Manchester Airport, East Didsbury, Ashton-under-Lyne and the town centres of Oldham and Rochdale, as well as a second city crossing between Victoria and G-Mex. View the full Metrolink map here
- A Stockport bypass linking the airport and the A6
- The Mottram by-pass
- A guided busway between Leigh and Manchester
- The Wigan inner-relief road
- Increased park-and-ride facilities across Greater Manchester
- A `cross-city' bus package, with better and more frequent routes through the city centre
- Bus station improvements in Bolton and Altrincham
The new funding will see 6 tram stations being created in Oldham town centre, instead of the original 2 at Mumps and Werneth- Mumps, Oldham Central (Clegg Street), Union Street, King Street, Westwood and Werneth.
Oldham Council Leader Howard Sykes has explained how the £84 million funding given to Oldham will reap many benefits for the town, “This has the potential to transform Oldham into an aspirational 21st century town and send out the message that we are open for business. This is about creating an infrastructure for those studying in Oldham to find work across Greater Manchester, giving them easy access to work areas across and within the city region.” The Metrolink extensions will help to link up the key higher and further educational establishments in the town - Oldham College, Oldham Sixth Form College, University Centre Oldham, and the planned Regional Science Centre - and therefore provide students with a transport network that will help them exploit their skills.
A broadcast of the above news can be viewed below