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Rail News – Late January 2024

Estimated reading time 3 minutes

Construction of the Birmingham HS2 Curzon Street Station has begun today, which will be the first brand new intercity terminus station built in Britain since the 19th Century.

HS2’s contractor Mace Dragados Joint Venture (MDJV) will now deliver major earthworks to prepare the site for foundation work in the Spring.

The construction of the main building will start this summer, creating hundreds of jobs, including an estimated 100 new entrant roles, apprenticeship positions and Restart scheme opportunities for unemployed people.

The station, which will be net zero in operation, will mean the journey time to London Euston and Birmingham will be 49 minutes.  Fit-out of Curzon Street will start towards the end of 2025, with the first trains expected to run between 2029 and 2033.

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Passengers in Bradford should benefit from improved rail journeys thanks to a multi-million-pound Government funding boost.

Rail Minister Huw Merriman has confirmed £24m towards a new platform at Forster Square Station to cut delays and futureproof the station.

The new platform is intended to ease congestion and improve access into the city for passengers, commuters and tourists.  Once complete – and subject to future funding decisions – this could result in an extra five LNER services a day, more than tripling current provision.

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A huge package of vital transport projects to transform the region has been revealed by the Tees Valley Mayor, Ben Houchen, following a funding boost of £1billion from the scrapping of HS2.

This represents the largest investment of money by the mayor in six years in office, with the money being earmarked to improve road, rail and bus travel across Teesside, Darlington, and Hartlepool.

Following a number of projects already made public, the mayor has announced at an event held at Middlesbrough Station, a headline pledge to bring 15 electric trackless trams to serve Middlesbrough, Redcar, Stockton, Hartlepool, and Darlington town centres.

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HS2 says it is preparing to enter a critical new phase with the development of state-of-the-art rail systems that will allow passengers to enjoy some of the world’s most reliable intercity train services. 

As 2023 draws to a close, HS2 Ltd is putting the finishing touches to a huge package of work that will eventually allow for the physical operation of the new high-speed railway between London and the West Midlands. 

In 2024, the government-owned company will let around £5 billion-worth of contracts to oversee building of the tracks, power, signalling, overhead lines and the railway’s new network control centre. They will be constructed to the highest standards to help create a new benchmark for speed and punctuality, ensuring passengers can rely on the service, even in the face of extreme weather. 

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