Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 10th June 2010
Title of Item/Report
Tees Valley Transport Schemes
Record of the Decision
Cabinet was provided with a position statement with regard to the Tees Valley Bus Network Improvements, Tees Valley Metro and Thornaby Station footbridge replacement.

Tees Valley Bus Network Improvements

It was explained that the revised Tees Valley Bus Network Improvements Major Scheme Business Case would receive DfT funding of £37.498m. The scheme had an estimated full cost of £57.236m and the shortfall would be made up of local contributions from the five Tees Valley Authorities and third parties.

The project would be delivered over a four financial years with Year 1 being 2010/11. A public information document that had been prepared by Tees Valley Unlimited was provided to Cabinet.

Tees Valley Metro

Members noted that, as part of Tees Valley Metro Phase 1, improvements were planned at Eaglescliffe and Thornaby Stations and were scheduled for implementation during 2010/11 and 2011/12.

It was explained that Ward Councillors had been briefed on the developments and progress associated with both Eaglescliffe and Thornaby Stations. As the design work developments further Ward Member briefings would be held and more detailed consultation would be undertaken with local residents, businesses and users. The public information document that had been prepared by Tees Valley Unlimited and gave general information on the purpose of this scheme was provided to Members.

It was noted that recent Government announcements with regard to publicly funded projects had placed an element of risk over the funding for the Tees Valley Metro and Tees Valley Bus Network Improvements schemes. Should the funding be reduced or withdrawn by Central Government then the prospect of these schemes proceeding was unlikely due to their high value.

Thornaby Station

As part of the Tees Valley Metro scheme a contribution (£290,000) would be made to provide a replacement footbridge at Thornaby Station. This would form part of a ‘funding cocktail’ with other contributions coming from Network Rail (£560,000) and the Council (£100,000).

The remainder of the funding would come from the Council’s successful Access for All bid that was announced in March 2010. The successful bid for £250,000 was the final element of funding for the replacement bridge, which had an estimated cost of £1.2m, and had allowed Officers and Network Rail to start work on the project. It was anticipated that construction work would start towards the later stages of 2010/11.

Should the element of funding from Metro be withdrawn, this would leave a shortfall of £290,000. Opportunities to pursue this funding gap from other services would then be actively pursued and a further report to Cabinet brought on the options available.

Eaglescliffe Station

The improvements at Eaglescliffe would include refurbishing the existing station building to create a ticket office facility, improvements to the current ramped access to the pedestrian bridge to ensure it was fully DDA compliant, improvements to waiting facilities and improvements to the car parking facilities. As part of the scheme there would be provision of CCTV and a Customer Information System (CIS).

In terms of delivery, work at the station was anticipated to start towards the end of 2010 and be completed by March 2011.

In parallel to the work above which is funded by the Tees Valley Metro, officers have been working with Northern Rail and Grand Central Trains to develop a scheme to increase the size of the car park at the station. Funding for this was coming from Grand Central Trains and from the Council’s approved Local Transport Plan for 2010-11. The design and development of this scheme was now advanced and this would also be completed by March 2011, therefore the risk to this funding was within the control of the Council.

RESOLVED that

1. the award of full funding for the Tees Valley Bus Network Improvements Scheme from the Department of Transport and the progress towards delivery of the scheme be noted

2. the progress of the Tees Valley Metro project be noted.

3. the award of funding for the Thornaby Station footbridge replacement be noted and authority be delegated to the Acting Head of Technical Services in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Regeneration & Transport to proceed with the design and delivery of the project.

4. it be noted that recent Central Government announcements and the Autumn 2010 Comprehensive Spending Review may place risk on the funding associated with the above projects.
Reasons for the Decision
Improvements to the public transport infrastructure are central to the delivery of key elements of the local transport plan and will make significant changes to the mode of travel available to the community.

The Tees Valley Bus Network Improvements are intended to not only halt the decline in bus patronage but to make positive changes to the way in which people travel to and from work and access services and facilities.

The Tees Valley Metro scheme will deliver improved facilities on the existing heavy rail network and pave the way for future improvements in frequency and quality. Again this will make positive changes to the way in which people travel to and from work and access services and facilities.

Central to these projects will be an improvement in the quality of the public transport services offered in the Tees Valley which will be measurable through the satisfaction level of passengers. Consultation programmes and publicity campaigns will raise the profile of public transport in the area and encourage modal shift towards more sustainable transport.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
None
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
None
Details of any Dispensations
Not applicable
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
Not later than Midnight on Friday, 18th June 2010
Attachment

Date of Publication: 14 June 2010


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