Latest Rail News

13.12.17

Further electrification work to begin on Shotts line as NR awards £11.6m contract

Network Rail is to begin further electrification work on the Shotts line between Holytown Junction and Midcalder Junction after awarding an £11.6m contract today.

The work is part of £160m of electrification upgrades to link Edinburgh and Glasgow – expected to be completed by March 2019.

Carillion Powerlines Ltd has won the contract to do further work on the Shotts line to help the introduction of ScotRail’s new Class 385 fleet.

Scottish transport minister Humza Yousaf said today’s announcement shows the government’s commitment to improving the rail network, with a full £5bn expected to be invested.

He commented: “This work contributes to the transformation of services across the central belt as part of the wider package of investment to enhance rail travel between the country’s two biggest cities, meaning passengers will see shorter journey times, increased capacity and better reliability.”

As well as electrification, the work – which covers nine stations on the route – includes platform reconstruction, renewals and enhancements to lighting.

There will also be new CCTV and customer information systems added as part of the wider upgrade programme.

Carillon Powerlines managing director Martin C Smith stated: “We are delighted to have been awarded this contract to electrify the Shotts line across central Scotland and we look forward to working with the project team to enhance the railway network.

“This award reflects the depth of experience we can demonstrate in delivering infrastructure enhancements in a railway environment and will further enhance the relationship we have developed with Network Rail.”

Two stations on the route, Livingston South and Breich, will be completely rebuilt and platforms extensions at Carfin, Shotts and West Calder will be completed to enable the introduction of longer trains on the route. The station section of the work is expected to be completed in Autumn 2018.

Iain McFarlane, route delivery director for Network Rail, said the contract was “another step forward” that showed the organisation’s commitment to Scottish electrification.

“Electrification of the line across North Lanarkshire and West Lothian coupled with improvements at stations will transform the journey experience for rail passengers who will enjoy the benefits of improved services for many years to come,” he said.

“Throughout this project we will work closely with contractors, train operators and other stakeholders to deliver in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible while minimising disruption for both lineside communities and passengers.”

The first electric trains to carry passengers on the route were sent between Edinburgh and Glasgow this weekend, although they were Class 380s rather than the Class 385 stock expected to make the journey in the future.

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an RTM columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

Tom Bevan   13/12/2017 at 19:29

"The work is part of £160m of electrification upgrades to link Edinburgh and Glasgow – expected to be completed by March 2016." Presume 2016 might be a typo??

Neil Palmer   13/12/2017 at 21:19

I know they decided to keep Breich open, after it was suggested it be closed, but surely to completely rebuild the station can't possibly be justified. Raise or replace the footbridge, job done. If the platforms are too short, selective door opening.

Andrew Gwilt   14/12/2017 at 04:09

This is the same kind of electrification that is currently being installed and erected on the Hospel Oak-Barking Line and parts of the Chase Line in West Midlands. Plus the Midland Main Line towards Kettering and Corby north of Bedford is also to be electrified.

Simhedges   14/12/2017 at 08:10

So, work is due to start (so hasn't started yet), and yet "The first electric trains to carry passengers on the route were sent between Edinburgh and Glasgow this weekend" - please could we have a more coherently written article. Preferably by 2016.

Philip Phlopp   14/12/2017 at 08:52

"Electrification work to begin on Shotts line" That's simply incorrect - route clearance has been ongoing for two years now, piling work has been ongoing for a year or so, and mast/portal erection has been ongoing since August. This work is primarily about allowing the stations to accept the longer Class 385 rolling stock and bringing stations up to more modern standards to attract more passengers to the route.

PP   14/12/2017 at 09:06

@Neil - it's not so much platform length at Breich, it's height - the platforms are very low. I'm fit and healthy but getting on and off trains there is bit of a struggle. Keeping this station open and fully rebuilding it is an absolutely scandalous waste of public money. It was used 48 times last year - think about that for a second, it's less than one passenger a week. I would suspect the bulk of them were enthusiasts. The station is pretty much completely useless, and before anyone starts, it's highly unlikely many more people would use it even if all trains stopped there.

Neil Palmer   14/12/2017 at 23:31

PP Maybe they'll put a roof over it like Manchester Victoria, a nice big concourse, and a few shops. Seriously though, I bet they waste millions on the footbridge alone, withe lift, naturally.

Jeds   15/12/2017 at 16:17

Perhaps some clarification is needed. The Shotts line will be last of the four routes between Glasgow and Edinburgh to be electrified. The route via Carstairs was first, and the main user then was InterCity for ECML trains travelling on to Glasgow Central.

John Gilbert   16/12/2017 at 20:43

This is just excellent and a logical consequence of the total electrification of the central belt to complete the whole. A pity we blinkered English types cannot see that that is what is needed between Ashford and Hastings and to Uckfield, two lines which may not in themselves justify electrification but form part of a whole area - in fact the LAST such lines needing that treatment in SE England. In Scotland, let us now see the Glasgow link line added to the schemes. Also entirely logical !!!

Malc Nixon   06/02/2018 at 09:10

is this still going ahead now that carillion have shuffled off this weighty mortal coil...

Add your comment

 

related

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

ORR report: ‘No one took charge’ in May timetable chaos, ‘everyone made mistakes’

20/09/2018ORR report: ‘No one took charge’ in May timetable chaos, ‘everyone made mistakes’

A scathing report into the May timetable chaos has blasted transport secretary Chris Grayling, Network Rail, and the DfT’s handling of the ... more >
Government rejects claims of transport spending ‘regional imbalance’

20/09/2018Government rejects claims of transport spending ‘regional imbalance’

The Transport Committee has urged the DfT to “be more specific about the economic rebalancing effects it intends to achieve&rdquo... more >
DfT quietly pulls the plug on CrossCountry franchise competition

20/09/2018DfT quietly pulls the plug on CrossCountry franchise competition

The government has decided to pull the plug on the CrossCountry franchise competition as a result of its rail review announcement today. Bec... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Going global: an interview with Network Rail’s Leevan Finney

29/08/2018Going global: an interview with Network Rail’s Leevan Finney

RTM’s Jack Donnelly sat down with one of the leading minds behind Network Rail’s most advanced and innovative rail maintenance techno... more >
Transforming travel in the north west

06/02/2018Transforming travel in the north west

RTM’s Josh Mines talks to Robin Davis, head of new trains at TransPennine Express (TPE), about the huge rolling stock change journey the co... more >
Thameslink: Nearing the end of the line

23/01/2018Thameslink: Nearing the end of the line

RTM’s Josh Mines catches up with Mark Somers, project director for Thameslink, on how the final stages of the programme are progressing and... more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. ... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

The East Coast franchise report tells us what we already knew: it was a bid set up to fail

18/09/2018The East Coast franchise report tells us what we already knew: it was a bid set up to fail

RTM's Jack Donnelly assesses what the Transport Committee's latest report on the VTEC franchise means for the industry as a whole “Eve... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

Northern Powerhouse Rail: The need for change

18/09/2018Northern Powerhouse Rail: The need for change

Northern Powerhouse Rail (NPR) will be transformational for the north – it will change the way people live, work, and play. It will rebalan... more >
Innovation through people and technology

18/09/2018Innovation through people and technology

Ian Prosser, HM chief inspector of railways and director of railway safety at the ORR, picks out the key industry challenges to focus on based on... more >
Why we all must mind the gap

18/09/2018Why we all must mind the gap

Clair Mowbray, chief executive of the National College for High Speed Rail (NCHSR), explains how we can all ensure the UK’s next generation... more >
3D printing: from virtual to real

11/09/20183D printing: from virtual to real

Like so many other technological advancements, 3D printing has moved from being the stuff of science fiction, through niche industrial applicatio... more >