The Department for Transport is set to plant a new headquarters in Birmingham, along with a “Northern Hub” which is to operate from Leeds.
According to an article posted in the Birmingham Mail ‘The move means that officials making decisions about the nation’s rail, roads and bus services are based in the Midlands and the North, as well as London’.
The department will still have a headquarters in Whitehall. However, the transition shows an active pursuit in devolving and improving the Public Transport infrastructure outside of the ‘London bubble’ to make public transport more effective and appealing in the second city as well as cities further north.
The Birmingham headquarters will contain new ministerial offices, with Government officials anticipated to spend a great deal of time in the new location.
The DfT is already recruiting in Birmingham and Leeds, with 100 roles including Senior Civil Servant positions.
This is a good sign for Public Transport in the UK as there is often a sense of disparity in terms of transport infrastructure improvement outside of the capital since infrastructure in London differs a great deal compared to cities like Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester and Liverpool. A more devolved form of infrastructure will allow areas and cities to build the systems that work for their needs thus improving the overall infrastructure implemented in cities across the UK.
Along with the active goals of reducing congestion and carbon emissions in cities, change like this will push people towards using Public Transport, reducing both pollution as well as congestion in cities throughout the midlands and the north.