Passengers at the heart of new plans for multi-billion investment in Scotland’s railway: Glasgow Central - concourse with crowd

Thursday 28 Mar 2019

Passengers at the heart of new plans for multi-billion investment in Scotland’s railway

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Network Rail has today published detailed plans for a multi-billion-pound investment to improve Scotland’s railway for customers.

The plans show how the company will spend more than £4bn in Scotland, and £42bn across Britain, to increase reliability and improve performance over the next five years.

Focusing on making improvements to what matters most to passengers and freight users –the plans will target punctuality and improving infrastructure reliability.

They also include a 20 percent increase in spending on operations, maintenance and renewals.

The funding is being made available from government over a five-year period, known as control period 6 (CP6), which starts on April 1.

Between 2019 and 2024, Network Rail will:

  • Renew Carstairs junction to improve line speeds on the west coast main line and on the routes between Glasgow and Edinburgh, via Carstairs
  • Renew signalling systems in Edinburgh and Perth
  • Deliver a £13m refurbishment of the Clyde Bridge at Glasgow Central
  • Renew and refurbish more than 256 other structures across the route
  • Repair or renew more than 900 km of track across the country
  • Complete the upgrading of Glasgow Queen Street Station
  • Complete the Aberdeen-Inverness Improvement Project
  • Add a second platform at Dunbar.

Network Rail is also working closely with Transport Scotland to develop a pipeline  of potential enhancement projects across the county.

Projects currently being explored include:

  • Growing Lothians and Borders (previously Edinburgh Suburban Enhancement Programme)
  • 7Cities Connectivity (previously Greenhill Junction remodel and Dunblane to Perth Corridor Enhancement)
  • Scotland East to England Connectivity (ECML corridor enhancement)
  • Edinburgh Waverley western approach enhancements
  • East Kilbride/Barrhead corridor enhancement
  • Far North Line corridor enhancement.

Alex Hynes, Managing Director of the ScotRail Alliance, which includes Network Rail Scotland, said: “We are committed to developing a railway that delivers every day for our passengers and freight customers.

“The plans published today outline how we will increase spending on maintaining and renewing our railway over the next five years to drive up performance and reduce delays.

“We will also continue to work closely with the Scottish Government to deliver significant enhancements.

“Over the next five years, we will not only complete major projects such as the redevelopment of Glasgow Queen Street and the Aberdeen-Inverness Improvement Project, we will also develop new enhancements alongside Transport Scotland to help further improve our network and boost Scotland’s economy.”

The plan builds on the significant investments made in Scotland’s Railway over the last five years, which delivered:

  • Borders Railway – reconnecting the Scottish Borders to rail more than four decades after its closure in the Beeching cuts. The line was used by over 1m passengers in its first year.
  • Edinburgh-Glasgow Improvement Programme - electrification of the main Edinburgh-Glasgow line to help introduce longer, greener electric trains, increase capacity and cut journey times.
  • Edinburgh Gateway – creation of a new train-tram interchange station in the west of the city.
  • Stirling-Dunblane-Alloa Electrification Project – electrification of 100 single track kilometres of railway from Grangemouth junction through Falkirk Grahamston and Stirling to Alloa and Dunblane.  
  • Shotts Electrification Project – completing the electrification of the route between Edinburgh and Glasgow Central, via Shotts, to help boost capacity and reduce journey times.
  • Waverley platforms - lengthening platforms 5, 6 and 12 at Scotland’s second-busiest station to accommodate new train fleets on Scottish and cross-border services.

Notes to Editors

Summaries of each route’s CP6 delivery plan can be downloaded at:

The delivery plans set out how money will be spent on operations, maintenance and renewals and total around £42 billion of funding (£38 billion for England and Wales, £4 billion for Scotland), as approved in the ORR’s final determination.

The £42 billion forms part of the total government funding available of £53 billion – £48 billion for England and Wales from the Department for Transport, and £5 billion from Transport Scotland. The £53 billion includes funding for enhancements, both committed schemes from CP5 and new projects in CP6.

For CP6, enhancements will be considered on a case by case basis rather than in the one five-year budget. This pipeline approach will be supported by business cases to confirm the strategic fit, value for money, affordability and deliverability of proposals.

Contact information

Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41

Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Network Rail press office - Nick King
Media relations manager (Scotland)
0141 555 4108 / 07515 617073

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 4.8 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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