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Decision details

Sheffield Inner Ring Road and Junctions - Scheme Consultation and Officer Recommendations

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Transport and Development

Decision status: Item Called In

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


To provide details of the consultation undertaken for the Sheffield Inner Ring Road scheme, provide officer comments in relation to the objections received and to seek approval for the implementation of the scheme (subject to funding approval from SCR).


That the Sheffield Inner Ring Road Scheme be approved and implemented, in accordance with the details set out in the report.


Reasons for the decision:

Failure to keep the Inner Ring Road moving can result in long tailbacks into the city centre, resulting in severe disruption for public transport, as well as adverse impacts on the safety, comfort and convenience of pedestrians and cyclists in the city centre. If we are unable to clear traffic out of the city centre in the evening peak, we will be unable to provide an environment that enables the expedient, reliable operation of public transport, or provide a safe, comfortable environment for walking and for cycling. This would ultimately cause the approach outlined in the city’s Transport Strategy to fall.


It is therefore recommended that the scheme is approved so that the scheme can be delivered in the necessary timescales.

Alternative options considered:

General background traffic will continue to grow without there being any increase in traffic capacity. The current 70 seconds of travel delay per kilometre will increase and the Sheffield Inner Ring Road will remain as the route with the highest level of travel delay per kilometre in the entire City Region.


The increase in travel delay will also result in greater traffic emissions which will adversely affect Air Quality. This is not a standstill situation but it is clearly a case of declining traffic and physical conditions.


Do Something (this proposal)

This option has considered the provision of an additional single traffic lane in each direction for much of the section of the Inner Relief Road between Corporation Street and Saville Street and alterations to three main junctions. Overall, journey travel time benefits become significant and the scheme delivers a very good benefit to cost ratio. The reduction in travel times will also reduce congestion and as a result vehicle emissions will be improved compared to doing nothing.


Within this option there is also flexibility to reduce the scope of the scheme, but still achieve journey time savings and very good cost to benefit results. This is important should risks such as statutory undertaker diversions prove too much for the budget available. Each intervention has been discretely modelled and therefore changes to the scheme can be easily quantified, should elements have to be removed.


Do Maximum

This option would consider adding additional traffic lanes along a larger section of the Sheffield Inner Relief Road to accommodate the full build out of the city centre development schedule as well as normal background growth.

This analysis would require a huge modelling resource to complete and the traffic generation from the mid to longer term developments would need to be estimated as formal planning applications have not yet been submitted.

Whilst this provides the optimum solution, the cost of this proposal is far in excess of the budget currently available, third party land is potentially required and the proposals could not be delivered within the current programme timescales.


Based on the information provided above the preferred option would be to spend the budget for the scheme on improving one of the worst sections on the ring road between Corporation Street and Saville Street which provides the benefits identified. The ‘Do something’ approach does not prohibit the development of the Do maximum option should further money be allocated in future to address capacity issues and congestion.

Publication date: 11/01/2019

Date of decision: 11/01/2019

Issue status: The decision is currently being reconsidered

Accompanying Documents: