As part of the ongoing transformation of the main entrance and the surrounding vicinity of Leeds City Rail Station, the northern portion of New Station Street (extending from the station’s main entrance to City Square) will be inaccessible to pedestrians starting from Thursday (24 August).
Pedestrians are advised to utilise the opposite side of New Station Street (towards Boar Lane), the station entrances on Aire Street and Wellington Street, or the Southern entrance, which remains open from 6 am until 10 pm.
The decision to close New Station Street is a result of Network Rail’s Mill Goit Works, a crucial maintenance undertaking aimed at reinforcing the subterranean structure beneath New Station Street, which provides vital support to much of the station’s superstructure.
Simultaneously, progress is being achieved on the Leeds Station Sustainable Travel Gateway initiative. This endeavour seeks to establish a considerably enhanced and more pedestrian-friendly setting capable of accommodating the rising number of rail passengers while ensuring their safe ingress and egress from the station.
The £46.1 million Sustainable Travel Gateway project is being managed by Leeds City Council on behalf of Network Rail as the landowner, in conjunction with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
Executing these two projects in conjunction will lead to reduced long-term disruptions and will also offer cost-effectiveness by mitigating the necessity to revisit the Sustainable Travel Gateway initiative for the purpose of reinforcement work.
Work has been underway since last May on the project, which upon completion in 2025 will encompass:
The conversion of New Station Street into a pedestrian-only zone, including the section where it intersects with Boar Lane. This area will feature outdoor seating, rest zones, and landscaping.
The relocation of the existing taxi rank to Bishopsgate Street, where a capacious and well-illuminated shelter will be established, providing space for six vehicles. This layout will also facilitate curbside boarding, simplifying the process for individuals using wheelchairs or accompanied by service dogs.
The installation of two lifts capable of accommodating 21 passengers each, connecting Bishopsgate Street to the station entrance on New Station Street. This will ensure seamless step-free movement between the two streets.
The establishment of a premium cycle hub at the station, equipped with electric charging stations and secure storage for various types of bicycles.
Enhancements to the environment of Neville Street and Dark Neville Street, encompass improved lighting, road surfaces, pavement conditions, and façade treatments.
The implementation of high-calibre cycling infrastructure on Bishopgate Street and Neville Street, coupled with upgrades to cycling provisions in the adjacent communities.
Councillor Helen Hayden, executive member for sustainable development and infrastructure, said: “It is fantastic news that the work is now underway in earnest delivering Network Rail’s 500 bike storage area in the Mill Goit area and the creation of a gateway to our city that meets the current and future needs of Leeds and everyone that uses the station.
“I would encourage everyone that uses Leeds City Rail Station to plan ahead and allow additional time for their journeys and thank them and local businesses for bearing with us as the works are conducted.
“The schemes on completion will complement the ongoing transformation of City Square and will create a safer and people-friendly environment whilst increasing the capacity of the station and developing better links between the city centre and the wider Southbank.”