Wearsiders can help Sunderland the wider North East get more much-needed investment in its roads and railway connections by visiting an event next week.
Transport for the North has begun a 13-week consultation on its Strategic Transport Plan for the North, inviting people’s views at an event being held in Sunderland next week.
Senior representatives are visiting Sunderland as part of a dedicated session to outline the plan’s recommendations.
They will advise on what this could mean for Sunderland, the North East region, and invite questions and feedback that people may have.
Councillor Michael Mordey, who has transport as part of his City Services portfolio, said: “As part of this region, Sunderland along with the rest of the North East and the North of England needs a fairer deal on its transport and infrastructure.
“Analysis of Government figures finds London is set to receive £4,155 per person on transport spending and the North East will receive £855, and the North West will see £2,439 for transport.
“If we want to have a fairer country with more opportunities for all then it’s time to re-dress those balances.
“Investing in this region’s transport infrastructure, whether it is improving capacity on the A19 and A1, improving the East Coast Main Line or the Durham Coast line is going to pay dividends.
“And Sunderland needs to be part of the Northern Powerhouse Rail map linking us more directly with the rest of the North. We lost our part of an extended TransPennine in 2004 and that should be restored.
“Transport investment is crucial to raising our city and region’s economic wealth and prosperity, its contributions to UK plc and in Sunderland there’s an opportunity to state more of our case through Transport for the North’s consultation.”
Sunderland is working closely with its colleagues in NECA (North East Combined Authority) on bringing more transport investment to the region.
Barry White, CEO of Transport for the North said: “The plan is underpinned with a robust evidence base making a compelling case for the investment priorities that would transform the economy of the North and the UK as a whole.
“This is crucial to ensuring the plan is fit for purpose and meets the needs and aspirations of those who will benefit from improved infrastructure and economic prosperity, the citizens of the North.”
The drop-in consultation is open to everyone and is an opportunity for members of the public to formally submit their feedback on the plan which will be analysed and fed into the final Strategic Transport Plan before its release later in the year.
The event, which takes place on Tuesday (FEB 6) at the National Glass Centre in Sunderland, will open at 4pm with a presentation from a Transport for the North representative and a question and answer session.
Another event will take place on Monday, also from 4pm to 7pm, at the Town Hall in Durham City’s Market Place.
The 30-year plan is the first of its kind and outlines how transport connections across the North of England need to be transformed by 2050 to drive growth and close the economic gap between the North and the rest of England.
Transport for the North’s public consultation runs until April 17.
A final version of the plan will be published later in the year and submitted to the Government for ministerial consideration.
For more information go to www.transportforthenorth.com.