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25.04.14

Design plans for Oxford Parkway unveiled

Design plans for the new Oxford Parkway station to serve the new Chiltern Railways’ Oxford to London Marylebone rail link have been revealed.

The station, opening next summer, will be built on the site of the derelict Water Eaton silo, demolished in October last year.

Oxford Parkway is said to be one of the best-located stations in the county due to its positioning adjacent to the existing Water Eaton park and ride site just off the A34 and close to the A44. The new station will have level access and integrated transport with more than 100 cycle spaces, 800 plus car parking spaces and access to the many buses serving the park and ride site. 

Rob Brighouse, managing director at Chiltern Railways, said:  “Oxford Parkway will transform travel between Oxford and London when it launches in summer 2015.  

“Our new station and service will provide significant economic, social and environmental benefits for people in Oxfordshire.”  

The upgrade of the Oxford to Bicester line not only facilitates the new Chiltern Railways service between Oxford and London (providing an alternative to the crowded GWML services via Reading into Paddington), but also the first phase of works on the western section of the East West Rail scheme, which will re-construct and upgrade disused and underused track between Bedford and Oxford via Bletchley and Bicester, and Milton Keynes and Aylesbury via Winslow.

Work on the project is taking place through a partnership between Network Rail and Chiltern Railways, who are managing delivery of the project via the Bicester to Oxford Collaboration. A joint venture led by Carillion and Buckingham Group Contractingis the design-and-build contractor for the £87m works

Campaign group Railfuture welcomed the extra detail provided by Network Rail in its CP5 Enhancements Delivery Plan but added: “The not so good news is: firstly the new lines will not be ready until March 2019, 16 months later than the original target; secondly, even on that timescale, there will be no electrification; and thirdly, only 'minor upgrading' of the Bedford – Bletchley line is included. This is a great disappointment and is the result of the schedule needing three years, from now to 2017, to obtain the Transport & Works Act Order to permit the project. And this is for a total of about 30 route miles of re-built line.”

design plans - middle image

Network Rail’s outline for the East West Rail works is as follows:

Phase 1

  • A second running line between Bicester Town and Water Eaton, with consequential enhancements at Islip station.
  • New and enhanced overline structures to be constructed to W10 or W12 + electrification loading gauge, subject to gauging strategy and physical constraints.
  • Capacity enhancement works between Wolvercote Tunnel, Oxford North Junction and Oxford station, the scope of which is currently under development.

Phase 2

  • Upgrading the existing Bicester Town to Bletchley freight line as a double-track 100mph multi-functional railway capable of accommodating three passenger services each way per hour and two additional paths per hour for freight and inter-regional services.
  • Upgrading the existing Aylesbury to Claydon Junction freight line as a single-track 100mph passenger railway capable of accommodating one passenger service and one freight service each way per hour.
  • Minor upgrading of the existing Bletchley – Bedford passenger railway to accommodate one additional fast passenger service each way per hour.
  • New station at Winslow.
  • New high-level platforms and track remodelling at Bletchley.
  • New and enhanced overline structures to be constructed to W10 or W12 + electrification loading gauge.
  • Installation of a new running loop between Aylesbury and Princes Risborough, if required, to accommodate extension of the proposed East West Rail Milton Keynes – Aylesbury service to Marylebone.

The Oxford to Bletchley Electrification feasibility study (GRIP 2 completion) should be finished in June 2014, and there is an indicative date of March 2019 for final completion.

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email opinion@railtechnologymagazine.com

design plans - bottom image

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