Thursday 19 Apr 2007


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As part of a major modernisation project, Network Rail has begun the next stage of work to remodel the tracks and upgrade the signalling in the Milton Keynes area. This will bring benefits to passengers in the form of additional and more reliable services. The £200 million Milton Keynes and Bletchley project will increase capacity and improve rail links into the growing town. Improvements will include: -A third fast line and platform, which will enable consecutive trains to call at Milton Keynes during peak times with reduced effect on line capacity - A new platform capable of handling future services to and from Bedford – and possibly in the future trains from Oxford or Aylesbury - Improved reversing facilities for slow line trains Network Rail's West Coast Programme Director Tom McCarthy said: "This is a massive investment, which when completed will deliver improved performance and increased capacity for thousands of passengers on the West Coast line. The project reaches some exciting milestones in the next few months, and we will continue to update the local community as the modernisation takes shape." The first stage of the two-year programme began in December 2006 and involved clearing the land between the existing northbound fast line and the A5 motorway to the west of the station, which will provide the location for the new northbound tracks. Land clearance has also been completed to the east of the station so that the southbound slow line can be re-aligned to make space for a new slow line turnback facility. Any vegetation removed during clearance work has been mulched and redistributed along the top of existing embankments. Once the track remodelling works have been completed at the end of 2008, replanting and landscaping will take place. The next stage of the work, which will run through the remainder of 2007, will involve earth work preparation for the new northbound fast line and the preparation of a temporary car park on the practice pitch land adjacent to the National Hockey Stadium. Once the temporary car park to the north of the station is prepared, approximately 110 passenger car parking spaces to the south of the station and parallel to the existing tracks will be removed for the duration of the construction works. More information and timescales will be available before any changes to the existing car parking arrangements are made. During this period a haul road will also be constructed between the A5 and the existing north bound fast line so that materials for the new tracks can be delivered and waste materials safely removed. There will be no interference with either the A5 or station footbridges during this work The work at Milton Keynes is part of Network Rail’s West Coast Modernisation programme with extensive work taking place along the line until December 2008.

Notes to editors

The £200 million Milton Keynes and Bletchley project includes funding of £23.6 million from the Department for Transport and £8.3 million funding from Milton Keynes Council (of which £5 million from the Milton Keynes infrastructure tariff and £3.3 million from section 106 from Milton Keynes Council)

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