Rail Industry Focus

22.09.17

Investing in rail in the north

Rob Morris, director of operation at Siemens Rail Automation UK, runs through his organisation’s impressive track record across the north.

With the Northern Powerhouse and Transport for the North programmes both firmly established as key drivers for investment and growth across the north of England, much of the region’s rail network is set to experience transformational change in the next decade.

At the heart will be HS2, which on its path from the West Midlands to Crewe will demand a number of interventions and interfaces with a combination of new routes and infrastructure upgrades required. HS2, of course, will employ the European Train Control System (ETCS) for signalling and control; as a greenfield project, it can take full advantage of the benefits that digital technology delivers without being constrained by existing systems, interfaces and infrastructure.

ETCS is one of the cornerstones of the Digital Railway Programme in the UK. Its implementation is critical to unlocking the capacity on our already-crowded network, and for some of the future signalling renewal projects across the north it represents a very viable solution.

The TransPennine Upgrade programme is certainly one route that could derive huge benefits from digital technology. One of a number of routes that face major challenges in terms of performance and capacity, the programme has long been identified as a candidate for digital transformation.

Siemens’ ETCS on-board solution, Trainguard 200, is proven in commercial operations around the world, having already safely covered over 200 million kilometres. Worldwide, we have delivered retrofit projects in Switzerland, Spain and the UK, including the ETCS Level 2 Baseline 3 system for the Thameslink Programme, which represents a real step change in technology. 

With a long tradition of project delivery across the north, we employ over 350 highly skilled and experienced staff across our offices in York and Manchester, having delivered projects of a wide range of scope and complexity. We are currently delivering the Huddersfield to Bradford resignalling project from our office in York, while our more recently established Manchester office is involved in some of the region’s most high-profile infrastructure schemes, including Ordsall Chord, North West Electrification, Weaver to Wavetree and Liverpool Lime Street upgrades, as well as a number of other significant enhancement schemes.

We are extremely proud of our history in the north, with our technology signalling, controlling and providing power to much of the network. Looking to the future, though, we are working with colleagues across the industry as part of the Digital Railway Programme as we continue to develop and deliver the technology that is required to support the growth in capacity we need.

Comments

David Walker   22/09/2017 at 16:18

This isn't a news article, it's an advertisement for Siemens!

Michael King   23/09/2017 at 17:15

Good performance and now Grayling behind digital signalling York Leeds and across Pennines . "Aye , keep it tup lad "

Lee   18/10/2017 at 10:51

Having read this article I am inclined to agree with David Walker. There seems to be a definite emphasis on investing in Siemens technology in relation to rail schemes in the North and their existing track record (no pun intended). perhaps this was cut and pasted from a tender document sent to Networkrail?

John Gilbert   25/01/2018 at 00:38

The so-called "Plan for the north is totally ineffective because it makes no demand for electrification, no pressure against the discriminatory, blinkered and negative attitude of (southern MP) Grayling down in London. The Plan should demand wires across the Pennines at the very least. And if this wretched man won't have wires through Standedge Tunnel.... right then, no wires through Standedge Tunnel, but the rest of the way certainly!!!! After all, it was he who required bi-mode trains! What nut-cases these people are!!

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