PLANS to improve facilities at Pontypool and New Inn railway station and turn it into “a key hub for regional travel” have been submitted to the council.

A new park and ride car park, alongside a footbridge and a lift, are included in the proposals, as well as newly built slip roads from the A4042 giving access to the site.

The scheme, funded as part of the £1.2bn City Deal for the Cardiff Capital Region, aims to improve facilities and services at the station to increase use of the railway.

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It is hoped the new park and ride will lead to people using trains instead of making longer distance car trips to Newport, Cardiff and Bristol, helping to tackle congestion on the M4 and A4042.

“Strategic park and ride facilities with good access from the trunk road network could be a potential means of substituting longer distance car trips to Newport, Cardiff and Bristol with a rail element, thereby relieving pressure on the M4 corridor and on the A4042,” a design and access statement says.

“The aim of the proposed development is to improve the basic facilities and services at the station, which has led to low usage of the railway and limited investment, by providing a step change in interchange provision so that the station acts as a key hub for regional travel for the area.”

The development is part of plans to increase service and stopping frequencies on the Hereford to Newport line, while improving station facilities and parking.

It is hoped the scheme will also ease pressure on Abergavenny and Cwmbran railway stations.

The new car park will include 133 car parking spaces, 11 electric vehicle charging spaces, 11 accessible spaces, five motorbike spaces, five drop-off spaces and a cycle shelter, under the plans submitted by Torfaen council.

A new footbridge will link the new park and ride with the station’s island platform.

The park and ride will be accessed from the southbound side of the A4042, with new slip roads proposed from the southbound carriageway.

It is proposed to build the car park on land, which is mainly greenfield, located between the A4042 and railway station.