Friday 27 Apr 2012
RAIL INVESTMENT VITAL TO BRISTOL’S ENTERPRISE ZONE
Growing Bristol’s railway is vital to the success of the city’s new enterprise zone, says Patrick Hallgate, route managing director for Network Rail.
At the launch event of the enterprise zone today, Network Rail shared its rail vision in redeveloping Bristol Temple Meads into a world-class railway hub.
Patrick Hallgate, route managing director for Network Rail said: “We warmly welcome the launch of the enterprise zone today. A robust rail infrastructure is vital to a thriving economy and the rail industry is poised to support Bristol with an integrated rail strategy.
“Bristol Temple Meads is located right at the heart of the enterprise zone and is among the busiest and fastest growing rail interchanges on the Western route, receiving more than 9m passengers on average every year. Redeveloping the station into a world-class rail gateway, with excellent rail links, will be significant to help position the new business district as an ideal location for investment, whilst boosting economic growth and catering for growing rail demand.”
The rail strategy, also supported by West of England Local Enterprise Partnership, aims to expand the station to ease congestion and provide excellent connectivity to London, the South West, Wales and the North. In addition, it plans to increase train services to cater for the forecast 44% growth in passenger number in Bristol over the next ten years.
A high-level feasibility study, led by Network Rail, is currently being carried out to determine the validity of this proposal, which is subject to government funding.
1. Station capacity improvements to ease current and predicted passenger congestion
- A new eastern station access to ease congestion and provide a convenient link across and around Temple Quarter
- A light and airy subway extension under the existing forecourt to provide a welcoming environment and improve retail opportunities for local businesses, whilst preserving the vistas of the historic grade 1 listed structure.
2. Redevelopment of the Digby Wyatt shed to reinstate two disused platforms, bringing the shed back to its former usage, accommodating additional train services.
Complementing this proposal, Network Rail also recommends a number of infrastructure enhancements to provide additional capacity, improved journey times and operational flexibility on the railway around Bristol.
These recommendations include remodelling of a key junction into the station area, additional infrastructure on the line to Bristol Parkway and line-speed improvements to the south west.
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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.
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.