Thursday 21 Feb 2013
Drop-in session to find out more about work to remove major rail bottleneck near Ipswich
Residents will be able to find out about work to build a new stretch of track that will help to take more freight off the roads and onto rail.
Network Rail is building a new 1km stretch of track, or ‘chord’, north of Ipswich goods yard linking the East Suffolk line and Great Eastern main line on part of the site of the former Harris meat factory.
The chord will remove the need for freight trains travelling to and from the Port of Felixstowe to use the sidings adjacent to Ipswich station as a turning point, eliminating a major bottleneck on the busy Great Eastern main line and freeing up capacity for both passenger and freight services.
The drop-in session will take place on Thursday 28 February at Ipswich Town Hall Galleries, Cornhill, Ipswich, IP1 1DH , from 4pm to 8pm.
Richard Schofield, route managing director at Network Rail, said: “The work we are doing at Ipswich, together with the other enhancements along the cross-country route between Felixstowe and Nuneaton, is a key part of our plans to take more freight off roads and onto rail.
“This project will help to take up to 750,000 lorry journeys off the road every year by 2030, reducing traffic congestion and carbon emissions as well as improving road safety.”
Preparatory work has already started with some track and piling work to be carried out in February and March this year. From March 2013 to April 2014, work will be carried out to three bridges. This includes installing a brand new bridge next to the existing rail bridge which goes over Sproughton Road, building a new bridge over the river Gipping as part of the new chord, and reconstructing the existing railway bridge on the East Suffolk line travelling over the river Gipping. The project is set to be completed in April 2014.
The chord forms an important part of Network Rail’s strategic freight network, a programme of investment to improve freight capacity across Britain’s railway.
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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.
Usually, there are almost five 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.