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2004-12-20 DfT-001
Department for Transport

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Planning approval given to extend Midland Metro


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Department for Transport



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Department for Transport

Planning approval given to extend Midland Metro
_______________________________________________________________


date
20 Dec 2004 00:00
source Department for Transport
type Press release



An Order is to be made under the Transport and Works Act (TWA) giving powers to extend the Midland Metro light rapid transit system from Wednesbury to Brierley Hill, Transport Minister David Jamieson announced today. A separate process will take place to determine funding for the project.

Subject to Parliamentary confirmation, and funding approval from the Government, the Order will enable the building of an 11 kilometre extension of the Midland Metro from the existing line at Wednesbury, to Brierley Hill via Dudley town centre. Much of the extension would run along the routes of disused railways. The decision to make the Order, which was applied for by Centro, accords with the recommendation of the Inspector who held a public inquiry into the proposals.

Commenting on the decision, David Jamieson said:

"The inquiry Inspector concluded that this extension of the Midland Metro would bring transport, regeneration and socio-economic benefits to the area. We agree with him. The scheme would improve accessibility to and within the Wednesbury to Brierley Hill transport corridor. It would run through some deprived areas and serve some new development sites. It would also provide an attractive alternative to the use of the car."

"We believe that the loss of some public open space as part of the scheme is justified by the wider benefits. This will, however, mean that the Order will have to be referred to Parliament for consideration before the powers can come into effect.

"I should also like to make clear that the decision on the TWA Order is separate from a decision on funding, which will be subject to a separate approval process."

Notes to editors

1. Centro (the West Midlands Passenger Transport Executive) applied to the Secretary of State for an Order under the Transport and Works Act to authorise them to build an 11 km extension to the Midland Metro light rapid transit system, running from Wednesbury to Brierley Hill, via Dudley town centre.

2. Following a public inquiry into the scheme, the Inspector, Mr G Self, concluded that approval should be given. He was persuaded that the scheme would bring transport, regeneration and socio-economic benefits; that it was supported by transport and planning policies at all levels; and that its impacts on local people and the environment would be acceptable, when proposed mitigation measures were in place.

3. The Secretary of State has decided to accept the recommendation of the Inspector and to make the TWA Order, with some modifications. He also intends to grant planning permission for the development, subject to conditions designed to minimise the impact of the works. These conditions will give Dudley and Sandwell Councils a suitable degree of control over the details of the scheme.

4. As the Order would authorise the compulsory purchase of open space, for which no land is to be given in exchange, it must be subject to Parliamentary approval. The Order will only come into force if it successfully completes its Parliamentary procedure.

5. The decision on the TWA Order does not convey any funding approval, which will be subject to a separate process. Full details of the Secretary of State's decision and the reasons for it are set out in the decision letter which is today being sent to all interested parties.

6. Details of the project can be obtained from either:

Centro
Midland Metro Project Team
Metro Office
Centro House
16 Summer Lane
Birmingham
B19 3SD

or their Parliamentary Agents:

Messrs Winckworth Sherwood
35 Great Peter Street
Westminster
London
SW1P 3LR

Public Enquiries: 020 7944 8300
Department for Transport Website: http://www.dft.gov.uk



Railhub Archive ::: 2004-12-20 DfT-001





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