A £70bn strategic transport plan across the north of England has been announced – and it’s expected to be good news for Warrington.
Transport for the North (TfN) has published its final plan in which it sets out an “ambitious vision” in the North for the next 30 years. The plan details a sustainable, economic growth programme that links together major road, rail and smart travel investment.
Proposals for the Northern Powerhouse Rail network as part of the transport plan include a new line between Liverpool and the HS2 Manchester spur via Warrington.
The plan also confirms the expectation that a service from Liverpool to Manchester Piccadilly, via Warrington, could take less than 30 minutes – compared to the current fastest service of 50 minutes between the two destinations. Northern Powerhouse Rail would transform connections by train for Warrington – for example, services could connect with Manchester Airport in under 10 minutes, Liverpool in around 15 minutes, and Leeds in less than an hour.
TfN says the plans are set to “rebalance decades of underinvestment and transform the lives of people in the North”, adding “the transport network needs to support the movement of people within and beyond the North”.
Current road network infrastructure was cited as a significant barrier for future growth and plans have been put forward to improve journey reliability. The transport plan details the need for “resilient, alternative road routes” around the north, with proposals for a major road network also set to boost connectivity between Warrington and the wider region.
Importantly, the investment plan which today was published alongside the Strategic Transport Plan, includes the Warrington Western Link. This investment plan represents Transport for the North’s advice to Government as to which scheme should be delivered, and the borough council welcomes this support at a time where it awaits an announcement on funding from Government.