Aerial view of Leeds

West Yorkshire devolution races towards net zero with National Infrastructure Commission

Earlier this week, West Yorkshire leaders and businesses met up with the National Infrastructure Commission to get a grip on what the infrastructure priorities for the city are.

Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission, Sir John Armitt, and West Yorkshire Mayor, Tracy Brabin, co-hosted a roundtable with representatives from Leeds City Council, and the businesses responsible for the most important aspects of the city’s infrastructure.

The main focus was on improving connectivity, with the Commission learning of the region’s plans to get the most value from the planned investment in a mass transit system, which is part of the region’s devolution agreement with the government, in order to help improve productivity levels, raise skill, and increase investment across West Yorkshire.

Following the roundtable, Tracy Brabin, said:

“The National Infrastructure Commission plays an important role in government decision making and we were keen to help them understand the challenges and the opportunities facing West Yorkshire. Today was an opportunity to showcase the infrastructure improvements we’re already making, but also to outline our vision for mass transit in West Yorkshire and the role it can play in connecting all communities to jobs and opportunities and improving our air quality.

It was great to have a chance also to discuss how we can get the most value out of the funding we receive from West Yorkshire’s devolution deal, by working in partnership with the NIC.”

As well as the investment and improvement opportunities, commissioners also discussed how West Yorkshire are responding to the challenge of net zero and carbon reduction, and how they are making use of the tools and technology that is available to them, and the opportunities for financing to meet the goal. They also shared the outcomes of the NIC’s report on how public transport can help, by reducing traffic congestion in major cities.

Sir John Armitt, Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission, said:

“West Yorkshire is a place where industry and innovation flourishes, and effective long-term planning and investment will help ensure that remains the case for decades to come. The country as a whole faces an array of challenges and opportunities in the second half of this century, and today’s visit has given us invaluable insights to inform the recommendations we’ll make in next year’s National Infrastructure Assessment.”

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