The UK’s rail network is undergoing significant construction work to overhaul the network and the services on offer. With plans to unite the North and the South with a high speed network and to reduce the congestion on the London underground, what New Year’s resolutions should the Rail industry start to make?
Keep things simple.
The Thameslink Project is an investment of over £6 billion to improve services at Blackfriars, Farringdon and Kings Cross. The plan is to simplify the track routes between North, South and Central London, helping to avoid delays caused by crowded platforms.
With a train service running every 2 or 3 minutes, the improved railways will allow 14,000 more people to travel during peak times. The end result will reduce congestion on platforms and make travel more comfortable at peak times.
Arriving on time.
The Thameslink Project’s goal is to make access to airports more direct with a new railway junction at Bermondsey, while Farringdon rail station undergoes development to provide a direct route to the capital’s airports.
The Thameslink Project has been underway since 2009 and with completion expected in 2018, the project offers a plethora of opportunities for engineers nationwide.
Make new connections.
In an attempt to ease the congestion across central London, Crossrail will connect Reading and Heathrow to Sheffield and Abbey Wood. With over £15.9 billion of investment, the new railway line will span 118 kilometres and improve connections across the capital.
The project aims to reduce the pressure on heavily congested lines, increasing London’s rail capacity by 10%, which will make travel around London more direct and efficient.
London’s new Crossrail line has led to 42 kilometres of tunnels to be excavated while requiring the support of over 10,000 engineers so far.
Go somewhere new.
Throughout the UK, trains are unable to exceed 200mph because of outdated tracks which haven’t been updated since the Victorian era. The High Speed railway project will bring the super-speed trains found across Europe to the UK in a £43 billion project connecting London with Birmingham.
HS2 will then connect Birmingham to Manchester Airport and Leeds with new, custom built trains able to carry more passengers than current trains. The project will shorten journeys from the capital to the northern powerhouses and offer frequent services that can run up to 14 times an hour in each direction.
HS2 is one of the biggest railways projects planned and it is expected to unite the north and south by 2026.
In an effort to make our lives greener, the Great Western railway is undergoing the UK’s first big electrification project in over 20 years. An investment of more than £5 billion has been granted to give the railway line its first makeover since the Victorian era.
The switch from diesel to electrical trains will provide the UK with a more reliable service across some of the most used rail routes throughout the nation. Journey times could be reduced by up to 19 minutes and because electric trains don’t ware on the tracks as much, less maintenance will be required.
Work on the Great Western Electrification project commenced in 2010 and is expected to be completed by 2017.
Learn something new.
All these plans to improve the rail network need skilled individuals. The projects have opened up opportunities for both experienced engineers looking for a new challenge and apprentices looking to build their skill sets.
Crossrail has already opened up over 400 opportunities for apprentices and the High Speed Railway will require 70,000 positions to be filled throughout the UK, with 40,000 of these needed in the West Midlands.
The UK’s rail network is undergoing some major changes that will help further connect the nation. To find out more about the UK’s rail projects check out these helpful infographics.
By Neil Wilkie, Head of Procurement, Marketing and Services at Fusion People – a specialist rail recruitment company with genuine global reach.