At its latest meeting on June 4 2020, the Cardiff Capital Region Transport Authority (RTA), which comprises elected transport portfolio leads from the ten local authorities in South-East Wales, has announced notification of its successful application for Welsh Government LTF funding, in conjunction with a series of updates on the south East Wales Metro and Metro Plus Schemes. These schemes include the 10 ‘Future Mobility’ Metro plus Phase 1 projects, the Metro Enhancement Framework (MEF) Programme and the proposed Metro Plus Phase 2 Programme.
A summary of the key updates follows below:
Following positive feedback from Welsh Government (WG) on the RTA’s bid for 2020/21 LTF funding, £5m of the original £7m request has been secured.
This significant allocation of LTF from Welsh Government for the development and delivery of, Metro plus Phase 1, Metro plus Phase 2 and the MEF Corridors development work, will be made to Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council in their capacity as Lead Authority. To coordinate delivery and maximise opportunity, programme management of the funds will be overseen through the Regional Transport Authority and the Officer working group, which will align to Merthyr’s internal governance arrangements for overseeing the drawdown of the grant.
The £5m LTF funding in conjunction with the £5m allocated City Deal funds for Metro phase 1 ensures that all Metro phase 1, phase 2 and MEF development work can progress in line with current plans. The shortfall of £2m is considered sustainable due to the Covid conditions which are likely to prevail for much of the period in question.
Metro Phase 1
All Metro Phase 1 projects are progressing in line with expectations. Both the Pentrebach Park and Ride scheme and the Abertilery Transport Interchange scheme are now also showing progress despite complex land acquisition challenges.
The Metro plus Phase 1 schemes that make up the programme are:
- Pontypool and New Inn Park and Ride,
- Severn Tunnel Junction Park and Ride,
- Pyle Park and Ride,
- Pentrebach Interchange,
- Porth Transport Interchange,
- Abertillery Transport Hub,
- Caerphilly Interchange,
- Barry Docks Interchange,
- Cardiff East Bus Priority
- Newport to Cardiff Transport Priority.
Metro Enhancement Framework
All 4 transport corridor programmes which include:
- NW Cardiff
- Cardiff – Vale of Glamorgan
- Cardiff – Maesteg – Bridgend – Porthcawl and
- Newport – Chepstow.
Are making steady progress with NW Cardiff and Newport – Chepstow ready to move to the next WelTAG stage.
Metro Phase 2
The Metro Plus Phase 2 programme is at the very early stages of development and includes the following schemes:
- Abergavenny station interchange & improvements
- Cardiff Bus Priority
- Cwmbran Interchange
- Cogan Interchange
- Ystrad Mynach P&R extension
- Hirwaun Rail extension and P&R
- Cardiff Bus priority between Newport city centre and the international conference centre Wales
- Brackla Railway Station
- Pencoed Crossing
- Merthyr Rail – Bus Connectivity and
- Brynmawr Transport Interchange.
It was also noted that an aggregate £26,112,817 in the form of “Expressions of Interest” had been submitted to the Deputy Minister for Economy and Transport by the 10 CCR local authorities for the pursuance of sustainable transport measures in respect of Covid-19.
Councillor Huw David, Chair of the CCR Transport Authority, and Leader of Bridgend County Borough Council, said:
“This is excellent news for the Cardiff Capital Region. The WG award represents a significant investment in our transportation and will allow us to proceed with confidence.
“I am also delighted that despite the challenges we have all faced over recent months that we continue to make such good progress on all our transport programmes. Every single local authority area will benefit from transport infrastructure improvements from Bridgend in the west to Monmouthshire in East, in our cities and in our valleys so it is vital we sustain momentum across the whole portfolio of transport initiatives.”
Kellie Beirne, Director CCR City Deal said:
“This portfolio of transport initiatives is fundamental to our ambition to create a truly Connected, Competitive, Resilient region.
“I am delighted we have been able to secure the LTF funding award, and at the levels of collaboration we are continuing to experience despite the immense challenges being faced by everyone.
“It is a testament to the hard work, commitment and dedication of everyone involved that we continue to be able to report such positive progress.”