Dan Jarvis, elected as mayor of the Sheffield City Region this month, visited the airport to hear more about its plans for an ‘aerotropolis’ that would generate 73,000 jobs and hand a Â£3.2bn economic boost to the region over the next two decades.
The mayor yesterday visited the Factory 2050 site at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, between Sheffield and Rotherham, and will this week go to the Olympic Legacy Park in Sheffield, the Yorkshire Wildlife Park in Doncaster and Rotherham town centre.
As revealed in The Yorkshire Post in March, Doncaster Sheffield Airport (DSA) wants to increase the volume of cargo it handles to 250,000 tonnes a year and host the construction of 8,500 new homes within its site.
Central to the expansion plan is to directly link the airport to London and Leeds with a newly created railway station along the East Coast Main Line, a move it says will place close to nine million people, from the suburbs of London northwards, within 90 minutes of the airport.
The station’s pricetag of Â£280m, which includes a contingency for unexpected circumstances, compares with the many billions of pounds being spent on major infrastructure projects such as HS2 and Crossrail in London.
Mr Jarvis said: “Our city region’s airport is already demonstrating impressive growth, not least with the addition of new routes to destinations such as Florida. But the railway station would be truly game-changing for DSA and the wider North of England, creating up to 73,000 new jobs and a multi-million-pound boost to the economy.
“The airport’s Aero Centre Yorkshire is also one of the sites that last week welcomed a visit from Heathrow, which is exploring DSA’s potential as a site for one of the Heathrow Logistics Hubs.
“This is a truly exciting time for our airport and I’d like to thank all at DSA for taking the time to tell me more about their plans.”