Cardiff resignalling work begins to cut congestion
Work has begun on the Cardiff area resignalling renewals project, Network Rail has announced. The scheme will help tackle congestion and allow more freight to run on the network, supporting Welsh businesses.
The £220m project, £17m of which is funded by the Welsh Government, will be delivered in five stages, starting with the Vale of Glamorgan line. Workers will replace over 300 signals, 12 miles of track, 59 sets of points and construct seven additional platforms.
The work will remove the bottleneck between Cardiff Central and Queen Street; with a 25% increase in capacity, to allow 16 passenger trains per hour. New entrance buildings and facilities will be built at the two stations, which account for 67% of all passenger demand on the South Wales Valley’s network.
A new station will also be constructed at Energlyn, with all stages of the work due to be completed in 2015. The contractors appointed are Atkins, Siemens, Balfour Beatty, Birse and Bam Nuttall.
Mark Langman, route managing director for Network Rail Wales, said: “We need to expand today’s railway to cater for tomorrow’s needs, and we are getting ahead of the game.
“On a network as busy as ours, this work is the equivalent of conducting open heart surgery on the railway whilst keeping daily services running with the minimum of disruption”.
Minister for Local Government and Communities, Carl Sargeant, described the project as “the first tangible step in delivering electrification of the Valley Lines”.
Mike Bagshaw, commercial director for Arriva Trains Wales, said that passengers would see “a real transformation to their rail services”.
RTM talks to Mark Langman about the scheme in the Aug/Sept edition of the magazine.
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