Transport for Greater Manchester has set out an ambitious plan to improve transport and connectivity across the region by 2040.
The transport body has set out a public consultation on plans to improve public transport access between the city’s airport, the High Speed 2 hub at Piccadilly station, and the Manchester Airport City Enterprise Zone.
This will sit alongside plans for a new wharf on the Ship Canal, rail and road links at Port Salford, and a freight terminal currently under construction 10 km from the city centre.
TfGM has also said major steps need to be taken to improve cross-city transport capacity, which may include “radical solutions” such as tunnelling under the city centre to expand rail and tram services.
It will oversee the Metrolink tram system’s expansion to Trafford Park, which will begin later this year and complete in 2019/20.
The transport body also supports the inclusion of the Crewe extension to phase one of HS2, and will bring forward the development of Piccadilly station to regenerate what will be HS2’s hub in the city centre.
It estimates HS2 will make Greater Manchester a “significantly more attractive business location”, adding that the rail link could bring up to 180,000 new jobs by 2040 and add £1.3bn to the region’s GVA.
At Manchester Airport, TfGM said transport investment needs to be able to support the airport’s ambition to grow from 20m passengers to 55m passengers, which it said will generate 51,000 jobs on site and £2.5bn of GVA.
Chinese contractor Beijing Construction Engineering Group International has already started work on a £15m logistics scheme at Airport City, and the airport plans to secure direct flights from mainland China to Manchester to improve tourism and business travel.
It also estimates that the region will need at least 200,000 new homes by 2040 to support its forecast economic and population growth.
Greater Manchester mayor Tony Lloyd said: ”The Greater Manchester Transport Strategy 2040 is about creating long-term plans to help build a successful, resilient Greater Manchester, ready for future challenges and opportunities.
“We’re now handing over to the public and I’d like to encourage as many people as possible to have their say on these proposals and help to shape the future of transport in our region.”