Network Rail lodged its Transport & Works Act order application for the so-called Tinsley Chord in March 2015.
Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin has now concluded that “it is in the public interest to authorise the construction and operation of the Tinsley Chord”.
The cost estimate lodged with the works order application was £1.83m.
The new line will provide a link between Network Rail tracks and the Sheffield Supertram. It is part of the Tram Train pilot scheme, which is a partnership between the Department for Transport (DfT) and Network Rail, Northern Rail Ltd, South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE) and Stagecoach Supertram. SYPTE will lead on the delivery of the pilot.
The project will provide a direct service between Sheffield city centre, Rotherham Central train station and Parkgate retail park. It will use the existing Supertram route between Cathedral and Meadowhall South and then move onto the rail network via the Tinsley Chord to Parkgate.
Work to construct the chord is expected to completed by the end of 2016.