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Rail upgrades promised as part of Port of Liverpool developments

Rail links to the Port of Liverpool will be upgraded as part of a scheme to improve the port’s capacity.

The Department for Transport will invest in adding a second line on the Bootle to Port link, increasing the line speed and improving signalling at Earlestown West.

The schemes are due to be complete by 2019 and will double the number of trains that can enter the port every day to 48, or two every hour.

Transport minister Andrew Jones MP, who visited the Port of Liverpool today to view two new options for increasing road capacity to the port, said: “We are determined to improve access to the Port of Liverpool so we can deliver a Northern Powerhouse by creating new jobs and an economic boost to the region.”

The rail upgrades will be used to support the Liverpool2 port development, which will allow the port to simultaneously handle two vessels carrying the equivalent of 13,000 20ft containers each.

It can currently only support vessels carrying up to 4,000 containers, and the new development is expected to create 1,000 new jobs in the area and up to 5,000 more in the wider supply chain.

Warren Marshall, group planning director at Peel Ports, which operates the port, said: “Upgraded road connections are essential but it’s also important to recognise the benefits of other modes.”

Port of Liverpool also recently opened a biomass terminal, which will supply up to 3m tonnes of wooden pallets from North America for rail transport to Drax Power Station in Yorkshire.

(Image c. Peter Byrne from PA Archive/ Press Association Images)

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Mikeb   17/05/2016 at 16:41

As the main freight line from Edge Hill to Bootle is already double track throughout, I only assume that the proposal for a "second line" means doubling the present single track from the container berths to Regent Road (the boundary with Network Rail).

Andrew Gwilt   17/05/2016 at 20:34

I think it be good for Liverpool with a new upgrades for Port of Liverpool with freights coming in and out of the port. Just like at Southampton Port and Port of Felixstowe.

John Burns   12/12/2016 at 15:53

@Mikeb, The line from Edge Hill into the port is double track until, as you mention, it reverts to single track entering the docks estate. A track and a line are different. He may have meant adding a second track inside the dock estate. A new line means a new line. One was mentioned taking a branch from the existing line via Atlantic Junction to Canada Dock, following the old alignment. This is still using the one line branched near the dock estate to access the estate at two different points. Not good enough. The port needs a totally new line independent of the existing. If this one line is down for some reason the port can be crippled. In 1993 the line serving the port was down for some time, as the Jamie Bulger murder was on the tracks. The port suffered, as well as the Bulger family.

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