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Can transport investment in the Midlands improve business confidence?

Above: CGI of the proposed Dudley bus and tram interchange (Courtesy WMCA)

The West Midlands Combined Authority is investing in a new transport interchange that could help to improve the visitor economy of Dudley.

New artists impressions have been released showing how Dudley’s new £24 million bus and Metro interchange will look.

It comes as council bosses revealed work could start on the new structure in the winter.

The interchange is set to replace the current bus station in the town centre. Temporary bus stops will be provided in the town centre during construction to maintain provision of services.

It will connect Metro and bus journeys together for people visiting and travelling through the town.

Funded largely through the City Region Sustainable Transport Settlement - formerly the Transforming Cities Fund - the project is part of the local authority’s ambitious £1bn regeneration programme for the borough.

The £450m Wednesbury to Brierley Hill Metro extension is set to offer rail connection for the town centre for the first time in decades.

Dudley is also the location of the brand new £18m Duncan Edwards Leisure Centre and the £26m Black Country and Marches Institute of Technology, which both opened last year.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands and WMCA Chair, said:

"This Interchange will vastly improve public transport connections for town centre visitors and businesses – giving local people the more modern, convenient and environmentally friendly bus and tram facilities they deserve. This significant investment in public transport – the Metro is due to open next year – will improve services to Sandwell, Wolverhampton and Birmingham. Overall, the Interchange is very much supporting the wider regeneration of the town centre. Together with our support for the Portersfield development, the Institute of Technology and the Very Light Rail Innovation Centre, the WMCA playing its part in ensuring a bright future ahead for Dudley."

Councillor Patrick Harley, leader of Dudley Council, stated:

"The current bus station in Dudley is one of the most well-used in the region, but is tired and no longer fit for purpose.

"These new pictures show what a transformation this new interchange will bring – a clean, attractive, modern new space to help people get around the borough and the region.

"We hope to see work start in the winter and it is a key part of our £1 billion regeneration programme to change the skyline of Dudley forever and make it a more attractive place to work, live, and visit."


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