The Anonymous Widower

Innovation In Railway Projects

This article in Rail Technology Magazine is entitled NR routes to publish ‘pipeline’ of third party opportunities by year end. It lays out a new philosophy of how rail infrastructure projects could be handled in the future. I suggest you give the article a careful read.

Some politicians will say it is privatisation by another name. But to me it is just a way of getting a project built faster in a safe manner.

This is a paragraph.

By the end of this year, NR’s routes will publish ‘pipelines’ of projects that they want to put out to market. The infrastructure owner will also be working with government on producing a list of third-party opportunities. Initially these opportunities may be at the smaller end of the spectrum such as new stations, depots and car parks.

Take the simple example of a depot. These days fleets of new trains often mean a large increase in depot capacity as trains are longer and fleets are larger. As fleets are often bundled in with maintenance, there is a specialised multi-million pound asset that needs to be created. Big investors create office blocks, sporting venues and shopping centres and lease them to other businesses, so why shouldn’t they build the infrastructure that the railway needs?

This article in the EADT is entitled New rail depot unveiled by Greater Anglia at Brantham on Suffolk/Essex border.

The article dates from February 2017 and says that design is starting and the depot will be open by the end of 2018.

Not a bad timescale for a depot covering 22 acres with fifteen electrified tracks, two of which are under cover.

Why should the taxpayer get involved in a project like this?

Network Rail’s only involvement should be to ensure that the depot interfaces with the railway correctly.

This article on the BBC is entitled Crossrail stations in west London delayed until 2019.

I took this picture at one of the of the five stations; West Ealing, yesterday.

Nothing appeared to be going on, despite the fact that much of the construction is well to the side of the railway. Compare this with the situation at Abbey Wood station, that I saw a few days ago.

I suspect Crossrail wish they had taken control of the Project Management of the five West London stations themselves.

Network Rail seem to have a culture that if assets are built a few years late, it is totally acceptable.

This culture must stop!



August 1, 2017 - Posted by | Transport | , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] In Innovation In Railway Projects, I describe how Network Rail are aiming to create a pipeline of smaller projects. […]

    Pingback by Musings On The West Anglia Main Line « The Anonymous Widower | August 2, 2017 | Reply

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