FORMAL proposals for a major rail scheme in Yorkshire have been lodged with the Department of Transport.

The scheme could deliver a new national and regional rail connection to Doncaster Sheffield Airport, and create 33,000 jobs for the North.

The Sheffield City Region, Doncaster Council and the Peel Group (owners of Doncaster Sheffield Airport) have today submitted the outline business case to the Government.

The partners say that with just 4.5 miles of new track required, the proposed GatewayEast Growth Hub Rail scheme would add high-speed electrified rail connectivity to the UK’s fastest-growing airport.

This would alleviate congestion on the East Coast Mainline, creating an airport with potential to expand by making use of largely existing infrastructure.

Critically, the plans quadruple the number of people with airport access via a sustainable transport mode from 2.4 million to nine million within a 90-minute rail journey. It reduces the need for 18,000 Trans Pennine car journeys to the North West.

The business case seeks inclusion of the project in the Department for Transport's Rail Network Enhancements Pipeline which is a major step in getting the project funded and off the ground.

The scheme would provide a new rail connection to the East Coast Mainline and the Lincoln line, with a new rail station to be located at Doncaster Sheffield Airport.

Doncaster Sheffield Airport would be the only airport in the UK to be connected directly to the existing high-speed East or West Coast mainlines with just 4.5 miles of track.

The business case outlines the scheme's positive economic impact on the North.

With the Government’s backing and commitment of £300m, it has the potential to unlock 33,000 jobs across Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire residents over the next 10 years, and 10,000 engineering, manufacturing aviation, energy and construction jobs within the next five years.

Robert Hough, chairman of Doncaster Sheffield Airport (DSA), said: “An East Coast Mainline station situated at DSA demonstrates exceptional value for money for the tax-payer with a 22:1 return on its £300m investment. Furthermore, this would be a strong signal to the North of the Government’s promise in levelling up. The return on investment from this scheme is greater than the forecast benefits of the entire Eastern leg of HS2 but delivering years in advance and fully complementary. It is essentially ‘shovel-ready’ and deliverable within five years.”