Network Rail has started engineering work for the final phase of the multi-million-pound Ebbw Vale line upgrade.
A seven-mile loop to allow trains to pass will be created thanks to 1.2km of track upgrades at nine different locations between Crosskeys and Crumlin.
A new signalling system will also be finished by Siemens in a bid to improve reliability and enhance resilience for journeys.
The work forms part of investment to deliver an extra hourly service between Ebbw Vale Town and Newport.
Nick Millington, Network Rail’s route director for Wales and Borders, said: “Completing this final phase of work will transform how passengers travel on the Ebbw Vale line and encourage more people to use public transport and support our aim of decarbonisation.”
🛠️We start major works on the Ebbw Vale line tomorrow— Wales & Borders (@NetworkRailWAL) November 14, 2023
🚌 Buses will be replacing trains for 19 days between Ebbw Vale Town and Cardiff Central
📽️Find out more from Tom Edwards, the project manager@tfwrail @BlaenauGwentCBC @CaerphillyCBC @NewportCouncil @transport_wales pic.twitter.com/qD1mwf7PxH
“To keep everyone safe, this work can only be carried out while the line is closed and we are sorry for any inconvenience,” added Millington.
Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council has funded the project with a loan from the Welsh Government – signalling and track upgrades have been enabled by a further £17m from Network Rail and the Department for Transport.
Buses will replace trains between Ebbw Vale Town and Cardiff Central until Sunday 3 December.
Transport for Wales’ planning and performance director, Colin Lea, added: “These works are vital for the timetable enhancements we’ll be bringing in on this route.
“We urge our customers to continue to check before you travel during this period, and as always thank you for your patience whilst we carry out these essential works to upgrade and improve future travel on the Ebbw Vale line.”
Image credit: iStock