Monday 12 Feb 2018
Shotts line closure gives platform for key electrification work
Livingston South station will undergo a £3.5m transformation when the Edinburgh Waverley-Glasgow Central line closes for 10 days this Easter as part of a £160m project to electrify the route.
From Thursday, March 29, to Monday, April 9, no trains will run on the line via Shotts while Network Rail engineers work to widen and extend both platforms at Livingston South.
As well as work to the platforms, the redevelopment will see the construction of lifts on both sides of the station to deliver step-free access, installation of new staircases and the re-alignment of existing ramps.
Improvements to lighting and CCTV and enhancements to customer information systems, ticket machines, validators and waiting shelters will also be delivered at the West Lothian station.
The work is a key part of the Scottish government-funded investment to upgrade and electrify the line to improve reliability and enable the introduction of longer, faster trains on the route by March 2019.
A bus replacement service will be in operation serving all stations on the route.
A range of additional work as part of the wider electrification programme will also be progressed during the 10 day line closure.
This will include connecting new overhead power lines on the Shotts line to the existing electrified railway at Midcalder Junction and installing concrete foundations and masts for further phases of the electrification project.
Brian Mallon, Network Rail programme manager for the project, said: “Redeveloping Livingston South station is vital to the successful completion of the electrification project and the introduction of new faster, longer trains.
“We know that closing the line is never a popular choice for passengers and it’s a decision that has not been taken lightly. We explored other ways to deliver the work required with the priority being to minimise disruption for passengers. The ten day closure is the best option to safely and efficiently deliver the work required.
“We have worked with industry partners to plan the work and have timed the closure for a period where passenger numbers are lower than normal and where people have more opportunities to flex their journey. We will continue to work closely with ScotRail and other train operators to ensure passengers can get to where they need to be and disruption is kept to a minimum.”
The closure has been carefully planned for the school holiday period, when passenger numbers are lower and some passengers may be able to be more flexible with their travel plans.
Passengers wishing to travel on these dates are being advised to allow longer time for journeys on replacement bus services. Those who wish to remain on the train are advised to use Livingston North on the Glasgow Queen Street line.
Information and updates on the project are available via twitter @ShottsLineElec
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 38,000 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.