Multi-billion-pound investment in the UK railway

Posted on 11 Apr 2019 and read 343 times
Multi-billion-pound investment in the UK railway Network Rail has published plans detailing how it will spend over £42 billion to increase reliability and improve performance over the next five years.

The plans focus on “making improvements to what matters most to passengers and freight users, targeting punctuality and reliability through better assets, timetables and information, and working much more closely with train operating companies”.

Moreover, the plans will see individual regions benefitting for the first time from their own budgets.

Network Rail’s funding is made available from governments over five-year periods (known as control periods). Control Period 6 (CP6) started on 1 April and runs until 31 March 2024.

Earlier this year, the company accepted the Office of Rail and Road (ORR)’s ‘final determination’, which set out exactly what should be delivered for the funding available. The publication of the delivery plans details how the money will be spent by Network Rail.

Andrew Haines, Network Rail’s chief executive (www.networkrail.com), said: “Passengers and freight users are at the heart of our plans over the next five years.

“Performance has been nowhere near good enough, and public trust in our industry has declined; this must change.

"Our role is to deliver a railway that people can rely on, with trains that turn up and arrive at their destination on time, and where passengers have confidence they are in safe hands.

“Our plans for the next five years bring us much closer to train operating companies and local decision makers; they cut red tape and make it easier for others to work with us, and they put a real focus on the users of the railway.”

The delivery plans set out how money will be spent on operations, maintenance and renewals and will total around £42 billion of funding (£38 billion for England and Wales, £4 billion for Scotland), as approved in the ORR’s ‘final determination’.

The £42 billion forms part of the total government funding available of £53 billion — £48 billion for England and Wales from the Department for Transport, and £5 billion from Transport Scotland.

The £53 billion includes funding for committed schemes from CP5 and for new projects in CP6.

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