Monday 10 Jul 2017
New barriers for Cornton level crossing
Network Rail has today announced plans to enhance safety at Cornton by installing an upgraded full-barrier level crossing system.
The company will withdraw its planning application for a road bridge and all-abilities footbridge over the railway and proceed instead with a full-barrier crossing, with obstacle detection sensors.
The installation of an enhanced crossing will allow Network Rail to meet its safety commitments to the Office of Rail and Road (ORR), the rail safety regulator, to either upgrade or close the crossing by 2020.
Installing the new barrier system will also remove the risk of bridgeworks at Cornton, which are still to go through the planning process, delaying the planned electrification of the Stirling, Dunblane and Alloa railway lines.
The cost of the road overbridge has escalated since the plans were first announced with changes in the design, the inclusion of the footbridge and additional road infrastructure works contributing to a current cost estimate of £20m.
Network Rail’s David Dickson, infrastructure director for the ScotRail Alliance, said: “We have been seeking ways to improve safety at Cornton level crossing for several years, however, rising costs and time constraints mean an overbridge at this location is no longer a viable solution for the railway.
“Proposals for an overbridge have also proved unpopular among many local residents and this new solution will allow us to greatly improve safety at the crossing without changing the wider environment.”
The new solution uses optical remote sensing technology, which scans the crossing for obstacles on the track. If an object is detected, trains will not be given the signal to proceed. The crossing will also be protected with full barriers as opposed to the existing half-barrier arrangement.
About Network Rail
Network Rail owns, manages and develops Britain's railway - the 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run). In partnership with train operators we help people take more than 1.65bn journeys by rail every year and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We employ 36,000 people across Britain and work round-the-clock, each and every day, to provide a safe, reliable railway.
About the Railway Upgrade Plan
The Railway Upgrade Plan is Network Rail's investment plan for Britain's railways. It makes up two-thirds of Network Rail's £40bn spending priorities for the five years to 2019 and represents the biggest sustained programme of rail modernisation since the Victoria era. It is designed to provide more capacity, relieve crowding and respond to the tremendous growth Britain's railways continue to experience; passenger numbers have doubled in the past 20 years and are set to double again over the next 25 years - so we need to continue to invest in building a bigger, better railway. For passengers, that means:
- longer, faster more frequent trains;
- better, more reliable infrastructure; and
- better facilities for passengers, especially at stations.