PLANS to ‘significantly’ improve the rail network on the approach routes to Edinburgh Waverley Station have been approved by Scotland’s transport secretary.
Michael Matheson gave the green light for £15 million to be invested into the Edinburgh Waverley western approaches (EWWA) project.
The western approach to Edinburgh Waverley is deemed to be a ‘critical’ location on the country’s rail network by The Scottish Government. They say that a late running train – even by a couple of minutes – can cause ‘significant’ delays to other services, and also cause a knock-on impact throughout the wider network.
Michael Matheson said, “With Edinburgh being a key economic driver for the country, a reliable train service is essential for commuter and business travel. It provides confidence to businesses and passengers alike, that rail is the best option for their journey and thus enables the continued growth and prosperity of the city. One of the key aims of the Edinburgh Waverley Western Approaches project is to provide additional capacity to reduce these constraints, improve performance and give greater resilience across the railway.”
Three infrastructure options are to be explored in the plans. They are: a new chord (Almond chord) with flat junctions at both Winchburgh and Almond; the Almond chord with a flat Winchburgh Junction and a grade separated Almond Junction; and the Almond chord with grade separated junctions at both Winchburgh and Almond.
The planning work being funded by the investment will include detailed modelling to guarantee the performance benefits of the chosen option, and to also guarantee that the chosen option is the most suitable – with costs against future needs of the railway to be taken into account.