£5 million Sheffield city region investment

Sheffield city region has been asked to invest £5 million into a rail improvement project 70 miles away in Market Harborough.

The investment comes as part of a controversial £54.4 million scheme for the development of the Midland Mainline (MML), which aims to reduce travel times to London from the north.

Sheffield city region has been asked to invest £5 million as part of a joint funding project of £13 million, with Local Enterprise Partnership counterparts in Leicestershire, Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.

The funds will go towards speed improvements at the Market Harborough station, which is over 70 miles away from Sheffield.

The project has already faced long delays, and wavering government support with questions being raised over the benefits of the rail improvements, and the efficiency of Network Rail.

In a public report in 2011, the East Midlands council estimated that “upgrading and electrifying the MML could reduce journey times by 13-14 minutes between London and Sheffield”.

Other arguments for the project include a proposed reduction in CO2 emissions by 40%, with services north of Sheffield estimated to save up to 4,700 tonnes of CO2 a year.

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