RIA welcomes the publication of the revised West Midlands Rail Investment Strategy
RIA Midlands & Eastern welcomes the news of the publication of the revised West Midlands Rail Investment Strategy which includes the delivery of the Midlands Rail Hub and several new stations across the West Midlands.
First published in 2018, the strategy was an initiative on how to maximise the benefits of HS2, support Net Zero targets and strengthen existing infrastructure projects. The revised West Midlands Rail Investment Strategy sets out a clear long-term plan for the regeneration of the region’s rail network.
The plans include:
- Development of the Midlands Rail Hub to create additional capacity for more services across the region – including on the Sutton Park Line.
- How, as London to Birmingham passengers move to HS2, spare line capacity can be used on the West Coast Mainline to improve local and regional services between Birmingham and Rugby.
- Providing a train service between Burton and Lichfield, calling at Alrewas.
- Removing diesel trains from the network and supporting further line electrification.
- Longer term plans for new rails including between Walsall and Lichfield and through Central Birmingham.
RIA Midlands & Eastern welcomes this announcement as it provides a clear vision for improving the rail network in the West Midlands. RIA Midlands & Eastern is pleased to see that the West Midlands Rail Investment Strategy is including the major project, the Midlands Rail Hub, as well as securing capacity benefits from HS2. RIA will continue to lobby for the delivery of both the Midland Rail Hub and HS2 in full. The Midlands Rail Hub is vitally important to our members as the increased capacity of 14 million more seats on the rail network each year will revitalise connectivity and economic growth in the region. New stations will increase the rail capacity of the region as well as bring new jobs and leisure opportunities to the area.
Milda Manomaityte, RIA Midlands & Eastern Lead said: “RIA Midlands & Eastern welcomes today’s announcement of the West Midlands Rail Investment Strategy, which strongly aligns with RIA Midlands & Eastern members priorities of having visibility and certainty around major projects delivery, decarbonisation, skills and innovation. We continue to call for close collaboration with the supply chain to develop an efficient and affordable rolling programme of electrification, to deliver the HS2 and Midlands Mainline Electrification programmes in full, and to provide the supply chain with full visible timeline of the Midlands Rail Hub programme, among other things. The full RIA Midlands & Eastern Priorities paper will be launched in Derby on 6 October and railway stakeholders are welcome to join the event.”