Latest Rail News

18.06.12

Scottish passenger forecasts ‘underestimated’

Passenger demand is being consistently underestimated in Scotland, a recent rail conference heard.

Railfuture, which organised the event, says the figures have been “woefully inadequate”. Rail re-openings have boosted ridership and exceeded passenger forecasts again and again, leading to concern that some schemes have not been developed due to inaccurate predictions in their business cases.

Passenger demand for the Stirling– Alloa line was originally predicted as 85,000 when the business case was developed. This was first revised to 155,000, then 400,000 once the lined opened – which was exceeded by the end of the first year of operation in 2008.

Railfuture conference chairman Jerry Alderson said: “The message that came out of the conference is that we’re really underestimating patronage, and all the openings inScotlandhave proved this. They opened Larkhall Milngavie, and it was a success, they opened Airdrie Bathgate, and it was a success, they opened Stirling Alloa and it was a success. Three out of three.

“Some of the estimates have been woefully inadequate and potentially schemes have not gone ahead because the consultants have underestimated patronage.

“Our own experience backs this up. We travelled from Alloa to Edinburghon Friday night and it was full, standing room only, and our fellow passengers told us this was a regular occurrence. The Stirling-Alloa service is currently hourly and they’re proposing to make it half hourly, to cope with demand.

“We have the evidence of how successful rail re-openings have been inScotlandand how quickly lines they can be built from scratch – not one of them took more than two years to construct after powers had been granted – and there’s no reason why this success can’t be repeated south of the border.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at [email protected]

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

Rail industry Focus

View all News

Comment

The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >

'the sleepers' blog

Maximising efficiency requires investment in data, but it’s rewards for rail could be extensive

14/11/2019Maximising efficiency requires investment in data, but it’s rewards for rail could be extensive

Rail Technology Magazine’s Matt Roberts explains the significant role data can play within the future development of the rail industry. Standing as a cornerstone of the UK transport network, the rail industry is forever striving to in... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

Interviews

Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he would not rule out his organisation issuing future r... more >
Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

08/05/2019Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

In answering the pressing questions of how current and future generations of managers can provide solutions to high-profile infrastructure projects across the UK, Pearson Business School, part of... more >