Construction of Rochdale’s new multi-million pound transport interchange can begin after the scheme, worth over £11 million, was given final approval, Local Transport Minister Norman Baker announced today (24 February 2012).
The new interchange will improve safety and security for bus passengers and will link directly with the new Metrolink extension currently under construction.
The interchange will be on the site adjacent to the existing bus station and next to the new council offices currently under construction. It will replace the current 1970s bus station under the multi-storey car park. The site of the existing station will now be redeveloped as part of the wider £250 million town centre redevelopment plans.
Norman Baker said:
I am in no doubt that this new station will encourage more people to travel by bus in and around Rochdale which is why we’re putting nearly £7 million into this impressive scheme which will support growth and cut carbon.
Having visited the bus station, it was clear to me that action had to be taken. The new station will be a significant improvement on the current facilities - the dark and dingy atmosphere is not the welcome you want when you arrive into town - and will also allow redevelopment of the existing site which will bring some 1,500 new jobs into the town.
Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee, said:
The Rochdale Interchange will be a distinctive new landmark, and along with the Metrolink extension is crucial to the wider regeneration of Rochdale town centre.
The Interchange will give Rochdale the brighter, safer and more modern transport facilities the town deserves - and it will be greener too, as the innovative hydropower scheme we’ve installed nearby provides the Interchange with an environmentally-friendly energy source, reducing its carbon footprint.
The Rochdale Interchange was one of 20 schemes given initial approval in the Chancellor’s autumn statement at the end of the last year. This is the first of those schemes to reach final approval, which means that all statutory powers have been sought and contracts approved. Work can now start on the main construction works with the new bus station scheduled to open in summer 2013.
Notes to editors
Today’s (24 February 2012) announcement grants full (final) approval to the Rochdale Interchange scheme enabling work to begin.
The new interchange is scheduled to open in summer 2013 with the adjacent Metrolink terminus opening in 2014.
The department will provide £6.972 million towards the full scheme cost of £11.5 million.