The East Coast Digital Programme will see traditional lineside signals removed, and state-of-the-art digital signalling improved.
By continuously communicating with each train, it will provide information directly to the driver’s cab. It is hoped the new system will boost reliability and help reduce carbon emissions.
The East Coast Main Line will be the first Intercity mainline to be upgraded to digital and it is expected that the first trains to operate on the line using the digital signalling technology will start running in 2025.
The technology is close to being finished between Finsbury Park and Moorgate in London. The next stage of the planned works will take place on 24 and 25 June will see the new equipment and technology being installed between Welwyn Garden City and Hitchin.
It is hoped that the digital signalling on this section of the line will be operating from 2025.
Ed Akers, Network Rail’s principal programme sponsor, ECDP said: “We’ve made good early progress on the Northern City Line, and we’re now preparing the way towards Britain’s first digital signalling on an intercity mainline.
Over the coming years this will enable more reliable journeys for the millions of passengers who use the East Coast route.”
Dr Linda Wain, LNER engineering director, said: “At LNER, we are proud to be forefront of the digital transformation of the railway, working with our industry partners to bring long-term benefits for customers.
“This vital investment in digital signalling will enable our Azuma fleet to realise its full potential.”
Disruption will likely occur over the weekend of the planned works with reduced services and rail replacement services in operation.