Friday 11 Mar 2011
ACCESS PLANS FOR BRIDGEND RAIL STATION UNVEILED
Passengers from Bridgend station will soon benefit from a new footbridge, complete with lifts and stairs, making access between the station entrance, ticket office and platforms much easier for everyone, particularly people with reduced mobility.
The £2.4m improvement is part of the national ‘Access for All’ scheme, backed by the Department for Transport, that aims to provide step-free access to around 145 stations in England, Wales and Scotland.
The new footbridge and two lifts are also designed to provide passengers with a safe and secure environment, where they are well-lit and equipped with close-circuit televisions and telephones. The platforms will also be refurbished with tactile paving.
Mark Langman, route director for Network Rail, said: “Wales relies on rail so it’s vital that we provide facilities which make the railway easier to use, safer and more accessible for everyone. Whether you’re lugging heavy bags, have small children in tow or simply find the stairs a bit of a struggle, the improvements being to be made at Bridgend will make a real difference to passengers.
“We know modern stations with easy access are important to passengers in Wales and we will continue work hard to achieve even more successes for them.”
First Minister and Bridgend AM Carwyn Jones said “It is absolutely essential that public transport is as accessible as possible, and I am glad that Bridgend station will join a growing list of accessible stations across Wales.”
Bridgend station was opened in 1850 and today, it serves more than 1.6m passengers on average each year. As the existing footbridge was not built with ramps, passengers with reduced mobility will have to rely on assistance from station staff to access the platforms via a level crossing or a controlled gate from the road.
Network Rail is currently tendering for contractors and plans to begin construction work by this year.
Notes to editors
Network Rail is currently also working closely with Arriva Trains Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government, the Welsh European Funding Office and local transport authorities to improve railway stations in Wales. More than half of the stations in Wales are set to benefit from a total investment of around £85m by 2014.
About Network Rail
We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
Every day, there are more than 4.7 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.
We are building a better railway for a better Britain.