Rail Minister Stephen Hammond was in Manchester today (31 March 2014) to see how an ambitious programme of rail investment is benefitting the region.
The minister visited Manchester Victoria station to see how £44 million is being invested to make it safer, brighter and more spacious for passengers.
The works will bring a significant boost to the local economy, and are part of a 5-year programme unveiled by Network Rail today (31 March 2014) that will see £38 billion invested in improving railways across the country.
Stephen Hammond said:
I know the importance of the railways to the north west and am determined that passengers and businesses get the services they deserve.
That is why we are putting record amounts of investment into our railways over the next 5 years and it has been great to see that in action at Manchester Victoria today (31 March 2014).
Our investment will bring a great boost to the local economy in the north west. In addition, we will continue to work with the rail industry to make sure they are delivering the electric trains that will make this transformation complete.
Key features of the work at Manchester Victoria include:
- replacing the roof with modern design
- new platforms, tracks and overhead line equipment to support greater capacity on Metrolink
- improved access to platforms via a footbridge
- more retail facilities
- improving ticket office facilities
The work is part of creation of the Northern Hub; a programme to transform rail across the north of England. It will expand network capacity to enable more and faster trains.
In addition, a fourth platform is being built to increase the capacity of the station at Manchester Airport. From 2016, the Ordsall curve will enable trains to run directly from Manchester Victoria to Piccadilly station and Manchester Airport.
There will also be electrification of the route to enable greener, more reliable services, with reduced journey times.
Delivery of the Northern Hub is a key feature of a new deal for rail services in the north for Northern Rail.