Network Rail completes £4.5 million railway upgrades on time over Christmas: Network Rail's orange army worked around the clock to deliver millions of pounds of upgrades over Christmas

Tuesday 3 Jan 2017

Network Rail completes £4.5 million railway upgrades on time over Christmas

South East

Network Rail has completed another £4.5 million slice of the £800 million Waterloo & South West Upgrade on time over Christmas, which will boost capacity at Waterloo by 30% by December 2018.

In total, the equivalent of over 15,000 hours went into delivering the upgrades which included replacing sets of points (the equipment which allows trains to move between tracks) and improving the signalling at Queenstown Road; complex signalling and power modifications at Waterloo to enable work throughout 2017; and continuing hydro-demolition work in the former International Terminal at Waterloo as part of the plans to re-open the five former international platforms.

Network Rail’s orange army also created openings on platforms 1 & 2 and 3 & 4. These 15 metre long holes will eventually become extra staircases that will improve passenger flow through the station by providing additional access to London Underground services, once the platforms are extended.

Becky Lumlock, route managing director at Network Rail, said: “Christmas provides us with a great chance to deliver vital aspects of our Railway Upgrade Plan while causing the least amount of disruption to passengers. Our orange army have worked around the clock through Christmas Day, Boxing Day, and New Year’s Day, providing a better railway for the growing number of passengers using the railway.

“Our work will now continue behind the scenes in the international terminal, but I’d like to thank all those who gave up their Christmases in order to deliver these upgrades.”

Across the country, Network Rail has invested £103 million this Christmas in nearly 200 upgrade projects.

In 2017 the £800 million Waterloo & South West Upgrade will continue, with Network Rail rebuilding the former International Terminal, and during a three week part-closure in August will extend platforms 1-4 to accommodate longer trains. In the meantime South West Trains will start to introduce a fleet of 30 brand new trains, providing 150 extra carriages, in April 2017.


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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.

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.

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