Welcome to our Railway-News Industry Insider Week 10 2020, covering all the important rail news of the past week:
The high-speed rail link between the UK and mainland Europe has given passengers an alternative to flying. Consequently, Eurostar passenger services have removed the equivalent of 60,000 flights (750,000t) of carbon emissions per year. Adding further international destinations, such as Cologne, Frankfurt, Bordeaux and Geneva would only continue this positive environmental impact.
Read more | UK-Europe Rail Cuts 750,000t CO2 per Year
A year ago the federal state of North-Rhine Westphalia launched the Fokus Bahn NRW programme, co-ordinating all parties involved in rail transport in the state to provide better passenger service. There has has also been financial and organisational support. State transport minister Hendrik Wüst took stock and said the programme had delivered for passengers.
Read more | Fokus Bahn NRW Programme One Year On
Alstom is leading a consortium that has been contracted to supply digital train control, traffic management and electrification infrastructure in Romania. The stretch of railway line on the Rhine-Danube corridor will be rehabilitated and modernised as it is an important rail link within the TEN-T network. The contract will run for an estimated four years.
Greater Anglia, which is replacing all of its old trains with 169 new, longer trains, has built new sidings outside of Norwich because it needs additional storage space for them when they are not running. The sidings feature four tracks that can accommodate four 12-car trains. The design and build took just over nine months.
Read more | Greater Anglia Opens New Sidings
Stadler has presented its results for 2019 and it was an excellent year for the company. It delivered 444 vehicles, which is an 80 percent increase compared to 2018; it had two successes in its attempt to gain a foothold in the Asian market, selling 34 diesel-electric trains to Taiwan and signing a joint venture contract with PT Inka in Indonesia; and it got its first order for its hydrogen-powered FLIRT H2 trains, which are due to enter passenger service in San Bernardino County in 2024.
Deutsche Bahn has been refitting its freight cars – of which it has 63,000 – by the end of 2020. That means it has to fit quiet composite brakes on 5,000 freight cars this year. Since it started making these upgrades, DB will have invested a total of 200 million euros from its own budget in the programme. This change is required by law, the Schienenlärmschutzgesetz, which is based on a European Commission regulation.
Alstom will supply a further Citadis trams to Strasbourg, which will bring the total number of Citadis trams in the city to 80. The order is to increase capacity on existing lines in Strasbourg, including Line D, which is a cross-border line into Germany. The Strasbourg Transport Company placed its first Alstom Citadis order in 2003.
In May last year the new Bombardier Class 710 electric trains were introduced on the Gospel Oak-Barking line on the London Overground. These trains have now started running into London Liverpool Street as well via the Lea Valley Lines. The electric multiple units will increase capacity by around ten percent and will replace the oldest rolling stock on the London Overground network.
The Forth Bridge in Scotland and the Britannia Bridge in Wales have both celebrated a birthday this past week. The Forth Bridge opened in 1890, while the Britannia Bridge was completed in 1850. The Forth Bridge is the longest cantilever bridge in the world and was the first major structure in Britain to be made of steel. The Britannia Bridge was the longest continuous wrought iron span in the world at the time of construction.
The UK’s rail infrastructure manager Network Rail is investing 113 million GBP in improving the track, overhead lines and signalling equipment on the West Coast Main Line over Easter as well as during weekends in May. Some of the work (at London Euston) is to prepare for HS2.
Read more | West Coast Main Line to Undergo £113m Upgrades
The final phase of construction for the rail connection between Oldenburg and JadeWeserPort, the German North Sea deep water port in Wilhelmshaven, has commenced. By 2022 the line will be double-track and fully electrified. Deutsche Bahn will also install noise barriers for residents, to assist with shifting more cargo to rail and away from roads. The total length of railway line in question is 70km.
The UK government took the Northern franchise away from train operating company Northern (Arriva Rail North Ltd) on 1 March. Northern won the franchise in April 2016 and it was due to run until 2025. However, services have suffered many problems, most of them out of the TOC’s hands. Consequently, the government has installed an operator of last resort, whose focus will be on rectifying the issues.
Read more | UK Government Takes Over Northern Franchise
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