WORK is set to get under way to create a new 250 space park and ride site on the East Lancashire Road (A580) to encourage commuters to catch future busway services.
The park and ride facility, being developed by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) underneath the M60 & M61 junctions, will serve a major bus priority route linking Leigh, Tyldesley, Atherton and Salford with the city centre and Oxford Road.
The brightly lit car park, which will be covered by extensive CCTV, will feature electric vehicle charging points, and parking will be free of charge to passengers with a valid ticket.
Work to build a new junction for the entrance to the park and ride site has already begun and is being carried out by Galliford Try, the contractor who is currently carrying out work to create dedicated bus lanes along the A580.
From Monday 16 March, contractors George Cox and Sons will start to carry out the work within the park and ride site, which will open when the busway services start running.
In order to access the construction site, there will be a one lane closure on the M61 on-slip road until late summer. Works have been planned to coincide with the school holidays as much as possible.
A further 175 park and ride spaces will also be available along the 4.5mile guided section of the busway, at East Bond Street in Leigh, and Tyldesley Interchange.
Over £30million is being invested to deliver more than 2,000 new park and ride spaces at key locations for bus, train and Metrolink passengers across Greater Manchester.
Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the TfGM Committee, said: “We know from experience that a combination of free car parking and first rate public transport will encourage more drivers to switch to more sustainable modes of transport for part, and sometimes all, of their journey.
“When they open later this year, busway services will offer fast, frequent and reliable bus services to employment, education, and healthcare facilities in Salford, Manchester city centre and Oxford Road to the south of the city centre.”
Peter Boulton, head of programme management services at TfGM, said: “As with any works that take place on the road network, there will be some disruption however, this additional lane closure is not expected to create any further delays for drivers.
“We would also like to thank people who use this route for their patience whilst we carry out these major investment works.”