High Speed Rail - Transport Committee Contents


Further written evidence from Centro (HSR 92A)

1.  This submission provides further details of the West Midlands regional rail enhancements referred to in Centro's previous submission and oral evidence.

THE ECONOMIC BENEFITS OF HS2 TO THE WEST MIDLANDS

2.  Based on research undertaken for Centro by KPMG[70] in June 2010 HS2 alone will generate sustainable growth in the West Midlands economy bringing 10,000 additional jobs and £880 million of economic benefits.

3.  However, crucially, KPMG demonstrated that enhancements to the existing rail network utilising the released capacity on the existing rail network would expand rail connectivity and accessibility. By doing so, this more than doubles the benefits of HS2, providing 22,000 additional jobs and £1.5 billion of economic benefits.

4.  The methodology to the study is outlined in the KPMG Report which has been submitted to the Committee for their consideration.

WEST MIDLANDS RAIL NETWORK ENHANCEMENTS

6.  In order to ascertain the benefits of HS2 when rail connectivity and accessibility enhancements were included, Centro developed an opportunity led theoretical timetable for the West Midlands. Certain assumptions were made in order to formulate the timetable:

—  Various committed infrastructure improvements were delivered.

—  A package of further infrastructure enhancements was delivered (see below).

—  Suitable rolling stock is available for the services.

7.  With this base network assumption, Centro has developed the "with HS2 Timetable Scenario" based on meeting the following connectivity/ rail service gaps as identified on the West Midlands Rail Network:

—  Black Country connectivity to Birmingham Airport (Centro and Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership priority).

—  Walsall to the national rail network connectivity gap - (Centro priority and acknowledged by West Midlands Route Utilisation Strategy).

—  Poor connectivity to the north from the West Midlands (Centro priority, identified by Centro in our previous evidence submission to the Transport Select Committee).

—  Expanding West Midlands connectivity to London (Centro priority).

—  Expanding Birmingham connectivity within the wider economic area (Centro priority, Birmingham City Council priority and; Greater Birmingham LEP priority).

—  Enhancing rail connectivity between Nuneaton-Coventry- Leamington (Centro priority; Coventry City Council priority).

A summary of the timetable is attached as Appendix 1:

REQUIRED RAIL NETWORK INFRASTRUCTURE

8.  Centro has identified the following rail infrastructure which would be required to deliver Centro's aspired "With HS2 West Midlands rail network":
SchemeStatus CostDelivery
Coventry to Leamington partial redoubling (currently single track) Coventry (Milverton Jnc) to Kenilworth redoubling supported by RUS. Feasibility study is currently being undertaken by Network Rail to consider inclusion in CP5 plan £41mCP5
(2014-19)
Coventry to Leamington full doubling and electrification, plus new station at Kenilworth Aspirational scheme to double remaining single track section and electrify route. Kenilworth station being pursued separately by Warks CC. c£100mCP6
(2019-24)
Coventry to Nuneaton Rail Enhancement Scheme Currently within DfT's Development Pool £21m CP4
(2009-14)
Walsall to Rugeley electrification and line speed improvement Linespeed improvements ready to deliver if matched funding can be found. Electrification supported by RUS. Centro seeking inclusion in CP5 business plan £30mCP5
(2014-19)
Electrification and New station at Aldridge Electrification supported by RUS for CP6 Delivery £11mCP6
(2019-24)
Rugeley Trent Valley junction improvements Aspirational scheme to facilitate full benefits of Walsall - Rugeley electrification. Over £100mCP6/7
(2019-29)
Wolverhampton to Shrewsbury electrification and line speed improvement Linespeed improvements ready to be delivered if matched funding can be found. Electrification is an aspirational scheme considered in the Electrification RUS. £40mCP6
(2019-24)
Camp Hill Chords (Central Birmingham) and associated new stations along Camp Hill line and Tamworth Line Centro aspiration supported by RUS£200m CP5/6
(2014-24)
Reinstated Walsall-Stourbridge Rail Freight Line Supported by RUS, potential CP5 delivery £100mCP5/6
(2014-24)
Snow Hill Lines enhancements including Rowley Regis Turnback and Snow Hill Platform 4 reinstatement Feasibility work currently underway for potential implementation in CP5 £10mCP5
(2014-19)

RUS - Route Utilisation Strategy

CP - Control Period (Rail Industry Funding and Planning Period)

8.  Centro believes this infrastructure requirement is realistic and the majority of the individual schemes are already recognised and largely supported by the rail industry.

9.  The scheme costs are at very high level and indicative at this stage, and should only be considered to give an order of magnitude at present, although some projects are better developed than others.

10.  Centro would also expect Network Rail to pursue an on-going policy of re-signalling the West Midlands rail network, and that this programme would deliver incremental capacity improvements.

11.  These projects would all deliver benefits with or without HS2, however the full benefits from restructuring the timetable can often only be achieved by the combination the infrastructure improvement plus HS2, as it is HS2 which would allow the existing Pendolino service on the West Coast Main Line to be recast around a regular 30 minute pattern, rather than the inefficient 20 minute pattern which exists today.

12.  Appendix 2 summarises the infrastructure requirements against the proposed new service groups, and shows the linkage with HS2.

INVESTMENT IN RAIL INFRASTRUCTURE

13.  Centro wishes to reemphasise the point that the economic benefits of HS2 are doubled when combined with enhancements to the Local Rail network. Therefore, in order to maximise the benefits of HS2, investment in the local rail network must not be impacted upon as a result of HS2.

APPENDIX 1

SUMMARY OF CENTRO WEST MIDLANDS RAIL NETWORK WITH HS2

APPENDIX 2

SUPPORTING SERVICES AND INFRASTRUCTURE REQUIREMENTS
Service ProposalInfrastructure Requirements Other service requirements Link with HS2
Aldridge - Walsall - Birmingham - Coventry - Leamington Spa (2tph)
Assumed rolling stock - Class 323/350 or other high-performance EMU
New station at Aldridge plus Walsall - Aldridge Electrification For the Birmingham - Coventry - Leamington leg, the Coventry Line Pendolino service needs to be at 30 minute frequency 30 minute Pendolino service on Coventry Line only possible with HS2
Coventry - Leamington Double tracking plus electrification and track layout changes at Leamington Without HS2 the through link between the Walsall and Coventry Lines would be more difficult
New station at Kenilworth
Liverpool - Walsall - Birmingham - Coventry - Northampton - Milton Keynes - London Euston (2tph)
Assumed rolling stock - Class 350
Walsall - Rugeley electrification and linespeed improvements Requires Coventry Line Pendolino service to be at 30 minute frequency 30 minute Pendolino service on Coventry Line only possible with HS2
Major junction improvements at Rugeley Trent Valley Without HS2 the through link between the Walsall and Coventry Lines is not possible
Wolverhampton - New Street - International (4tph)
Note service extends hourly to Shrewsbury
Assumed rolling stock - Class 323 or other high-performance EMU
May require extra bay platform at Birmingham International Requires Coventry Line Pendolino service to be at 30 minute frequency 30 minute Pendolino service on Coventry Line only possible with HS2
Signalling improvements to allow three minutes headways Requires the Birmingham - Liverpool service to be diverted via Walsall
Hourly Shrewsbury extension requires electrification and linespeed improvements on Wolverhampton - Shrewsbury Line Needs testing against freight capacity requirements on Coventry line
London Euston - Milton Keynes - Coventry - New Street - Wolverhampton - Shrewsbury/Scotland (2tph)
Assumed rolling stock - Pendolino
Euston - Shrewsbury Pendolino service requires electrification and linespeed improvements on Wolves - Shrewsbury line 30 minute core frequency between Birmingham and London only possible with HS2 removing demand from existing Pendolino service
Diversion of Reading - Newcastle service via Coventry Requires track doubling at least between Leamington and Kenilworth Can happen in advance of HS2, but without HS2 these services can only be accommodated by worsening the already poor spacing of the local services between New St and Coventry
Requires Wolverhampton - Shrewsbury linespeed enhancements to change timings of Aberystwyth service between New St and International
Snow Hill Lines service recast
Assumed Rolling Stock - high performance DMU
Rowley Regis turnback and Snow Hill Platform 4 reinstatement Would significantly benefit from the diversion of the Reading - Newcastle service away from the Solihull corridor Can happen in advance of HS2, but improving the service on the Snow Hill lines will improve the connectivity to the Birmingham City HS station at Moor Street
Track and signalling improvements at Worcester
Camp Hill Line Local Service
Assumed rolling stock - DMU
New stations and track layout changes at Kings Norton Requires the diversion of freight services away from route via re-opened Stourbridge - Walsall line Can happen in advance of HS2, although would provide good connectivity into HS2 at Moor Street
Camp Hill chord lines and new lines into Moor Street station. The more efficient platform occupation possible with HS2 at New Street, might allow the service to run to/from New Street without need to invest in Camp Hill Chords.
Tamworth/Nuneaton Line Local Service
Assumed rolling stock - DMU
New stations. Requires the diversion of freight services away from route via re-opened Stourbridge - Walsall line Can happen in advance of HS2, although would provide good connectivity into HS2 at Moor Street
Turnback siding at Tamworth plus signalling and track improvements in the Water Orton and Kingsbury areas. The more efficient platform occupation possible with HS2 at New Street, might allow the service to run to/from New Street without need to invest in Camp Hill Chords.
Camp Hill chord lines and new lines into Moor Street station or other changes to allow operation into New Street




70   High Speed Rail and Supporting Investments in the West Midlands - KPMG - June 2010

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Prepared 8 November 2011