While excitement surrounds the opening ceremony of the Tour de France, commuters in Leeds city should be aware of the impact on tonight’s rush hour traffic.
Riders will be making their way to the official Opening Ceremony Team Presentation at Leeds Arena parading through the city centre from around 6pm, giving people the chance to see all the riders before the Grand Depart begins from the Headrow on Saturday.
They will be following a route from Leeds University into the city centre along Calverley Street before crossing Millennium Square, heading up Upper Cookridge Street before crossing Clay Pit Lane and turning right onto Merrion Way before a final left turn takes them into the Leeds Arena.
A number of road closures and parking restrictions will be in place from 4pm this afternoon.
*Calverley Street between Clarendon Way and Great George Street
*Clay Pit Lane (south-west bound) between the Inner Ring Road and Woodhouse Lane
*Cookridge Street between Portland Gate and Woodhouse Lane
*Lovell Park Road between Grafton Street and Merrion Way
*Wade Lane - closed northbound
*Willow Terrace Road
*Woodhouse Lane at its junction with Clay Pit Lane
Coun Keith Wakefield, leader of Leeds City Council said: “We recognise this is a working day and given the time of the event it will cause disruption to people’s journeys home from work. I would ask please for people to be patient and understand this is very much a special one-off, and if possible I would advise staying in the city centre and joining in the fun as it really will be something to see and be part of.”
Saturday’s Grand Départ begins at 11am outside Leeds Art Gallery and heads along The Headrow before joining the A61 and passing through Scott Hall, Chapel Allerton, Moortown, Alwoodley, Harewood, Arthington, Pool in Wharfedale and Otley and then heading into the Yorkshire Dales and ending in Harrogate.
In order for the route to be prepared and the event to take place and conclude safely, the following road closures will be in place from the early hours of Saturday morning:
*City centre to Regent Street - roads closed from midnight on Friday July 4 until approx 3pm on Saturday July 5.
*Regent Street to A6120 Leeds Ring Road - roads closed from 4.30am to approx 3pm
*A6120 Leeds Ring Road to Harewood - roads closed from 4.30am to approx 3pm
*Harewood to A660 Bradford border - roads closed from 5am to approx 3pm
There are some variations to these timings, such as the A61 northbound from the A6120 Ring Road will not close until 6.30am to allow access for car parking to the Harewood Estate only (through movements will be restricted from 4.30am), and the A658 Main Street at Pool in Wharfedale and Crossgate in Otley remaining open until approximately 8am also to provide access for spectator parking. Roads related to the spectator hub in the centre of Otley are expected to remain closed until 8pm at the latest. These times are all subject to change on the day itself.