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Old October 6th, 2007, 12:04 AM   #1
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Northern Hub

Surly worth it's own thread if this latest news is true?(see below)

With the Government ordering a feasibility study and possible redevelopment costs of £2 billion this is fantastic news. This news will also give a huge boost to Eastgate and other highrise proposals planned for the Piccadilly area. Anyone else think the BBC move North has played a role in the possible redevelopment/enlargement of Piccadilly?

Plans for rail capital of north
Alan Salter
5/10/2007

MANCHESTER could become the rail capital of the north in a £2bn expansion of Piccadilly Station.

Transport minister Rosie Winterton surprised even people lobbying for the investment when she hastily arranged an official visit to the station to announce that the government had ordered a feasibility study into improving Piccadilly.

It will enable more and faster trains to operate across the north, particularly key services between Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle. And the increased capacity will allow faster and more direct services to Manchester Airport, and more freight traffic to connect with northern ports.

News of the announcement came in a late-night call to M.E.N. political editor Ian Craig, increasing speculation that an election announcement is imminent. Mrs Winterton could not say how much the work would cost but Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Authority chairman Roger Jones said: "If they agree to everything which is needed, the bill would be about £2bn and we need to finish the work within about three years."

Mrs Winterton said: "Following on from the strategy set out in this summer's Rail White Paper, I want to pursue the idea of a Manchester hub as a priority, to help unlock more of the region's economic power. This study will give us more details on how and when this could be done and at what cost.

"This work, combined with our investment outlined in the White Paper and our improvements to the West Coast Main Line, demonstrates the growth the region is still capable of."

There could be a new rail link between Piccadilly and Victoria, a rail flyover south of Piccadilly to allow trains to come in from the Ardwick direction and measures to ease congestion on platforms 13 and 14 where all trains from the north must pass on two lines. Asked if the government would pay for the work, the minister would not say. She said: "A feasibility study is just what it says. But it is a big step forward and it shows we have taken on board what people have been telling us."

Mr Jones said: "Piccadilly has already been named the country's favourite station and we look forward to working with Network Rail and the Department for Transport on this feasibility study to improve the network to the benefit of the north west as a whole."
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Old October 6th, 2007, 12:06 AM   #2
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From PW.

Manchester rail pledge
07:45 | 05.10.07


The government yesterday attempted to assuage regional concerns about transport investment, only days after appearing to press the button on London’s Crossrail, by promising to examine how to increase capacity at the north of England’s biggest rail bottleneck. Financial Times
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Transport minister Rosie Winterton said relieving rail congestion in Manchester was a priority ‘to help unlock more of the region’s economic power’.

Northern development agencies have said the so-called Manchester Hub is the most important rail investment needed in the region.

’This is something the chamber has campaigned long and hard for,’ Angie Robinson, chief executive of Greater Manchester Chamber, said. ’Our region has recently benefited from significant improvements in northsouth rail links, but eastwest connections have continued to be neglected. As a result Manchester stations, and in particular Piccadilly, have become severe bottlenecks.’
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Old October 6th, 2007, 12:27 AM   #3
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It makes sense. It's what Eddington recommended. Smaller projects to solve major problems in a piecemeal fashion, and improved links between Lancashire and Yorkshire (Manc and Leeds) to remove the negative effects of congestion and capacity constraints in both regions' economic drivers.

£2bn does sound an awful lot for a couple of flyovers and some resignaling. That's 1/8th the cost of crossrail, which is a 43km tunnel under London. Have MEN fact checkers fallen asleep again?
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Old October 6th, 2007, 12:30 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cherguevara View Post
It makes sense. It's what Eddington recommended. Smaller projects to solve major problems in a piecemeal fashion, and improved links between Lancashire and Yorkshire (Manc and Leeds) to remove the negative effects of congestion and capacity constraints in both regions' economic drivers.

£2bn does sound an awful lot for a couple of flyovers and some resignaling. That's 1/8th the cost of crossrail, which is a 43km tunnel under London. Have MEN fact checkers fallen asleep again?
Perhaps we should give Rog a ring.

Quote:
Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Authority chairman Roger Jones said: "If they agree to everything which is needed, the bill would be about £2bn
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Old October 6th, 2007, 12:41 AM   #5
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I think Rog may be a fanstsist. He wants 2bn for the next three years, on top of the 1.8bn he wants for the next 5 years. Where does he think he is, London.

Admittedly though if the North does have a local project of national significance (a la Crossrail) improving the path of trains through Manchester is it. You can get from Leeds to Ashbury's in about 40 minutes, and then you just sit there an age waiting for the platform to free up.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:14 AM   #6
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Quote:
"If they agree to everything which is needed,[b] the bill would be about £2bn and we need to finish the work within about three years."
That pretty arbitrary figure of £2bn includes projects like doubling track capacity between Piccadilly and Guide Bridge, and not just works to Piccadilly and a flyover, I'm assuming.

I'm not sure that this has anything to do with the BBC at all. More like just part of a serious effort once and for all to sort out transport, or rather to make a good start.

I don't believe that it's possible to spend this sort of money in Manchester, as a kind of crossrail appeasement, and not also chuck vast amounts of serious cash at Birmingham New St, and Leeds and wherever else requires investment (everywhere?)

Anyway, what's a 'feasibility study' supposed to mean? Even more hundreds of thousands of ££s thrown at transport consultants to come up with exactly the same solution any number of laymen on here could write on the back of a used envelope!
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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:17 AM   #7
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I think the feasibility study will be getting the back of the envelope, bulding an economic model out of it and seeing what comes out the other end. Which you could probably do with a few afternoons, the internet and excel. But could any of us be bothered?
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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:35 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Cherguevara View Post
But could any of us be bothered?
For a modest fee, yes.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 10:25 AM   #9
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Manchester set to become rail capital of north in 2 billion pound expansion of Piccadilly Station

Quote:
Plans for rail capital of north
Alan Salter
5/10/2007

MANCHESTER could become the rail capital of the north in a £2bn expansion of Piccadilly Station.

Transport minister Rosie Winterton surprised even people lobbying for the investment when she hastily arranged an official visit to the station to announce that the government had ordered a feasibility study into improving Piccadilly.

It will enable more and faster trains to operate across the north, particularly key services between Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle. And the increased capacity will allow faster and more direct services to Manchester Airport, and more freight traffic to connect with northern ports.

News of the announcement came in a late-night call to M.E.N. political editor Ian Craig, increasing speculation that an election announcement is imminent. Mrs Winterton could not say how much the work would cost but Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Authority chairman Roger Jones said: "If they agree to everything which is needed, the bill would be about £2bn and we need to finish the work within about three years."

Mrs Winterton said: "Following on from the strategy set out in this summer's Rail White Paper, I want to pursue the idea of a Manchester hub as a priority, to help unlock more of the region's economic power. This study will give us more details on how and when this could be done and at what cost.

"This work, combined with our investment outlined in the White Paper and our improvements to the West Coast Main Line, demonstrates the growth the region is still capable of."

There could be a new rail link between Piccadilly and Victoria, a rail flyover south of Piccadilly to allow trains to come in from the Ardwick direction and measures to ease congestion on platforms 13 and 14 where all trains from the north must pass on two lines. Asked if the government would pay for the work, the minister would not say. She said: "A feasibility study is just what it says. But it is a big step forward and it shows we have taken on board what people have been telling us."

Mr Jones said: "Piccadilly has already been named the country's favourite station and we look forward to working with Network Rail and the Department for Transport on this feasibility study to improve the network to the benefit of the north west as a whole."
Link.
http://www.manchestereveningnews.co....pital_of_north
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Old October 6th, 2007, 12:49 PM   #10
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Minister hastily makes announcement for £2 billion investment. Mmmm.. this reminds me of the Crossrail announcements they made before the last two general elections but didn't follow up on....
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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:03 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blabber II View Post
Minister hastily makes announcement for £2 billion investment. Mmmm.. this reminds me of the Crossrail announcements they made before the last two general elections but didn't follow up on....
Five members of Brown's cabinet are from GM, that's nearly 1/6 of the cabinet, including the Secretary of State for Transport and Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, so if Labour stay in power at the next elections I can't see them pulling out of this.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:11 PM   #12
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£2BILLION?!?!? Don't tell the Brummies!
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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:11 PM   #13
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And New Street in Brum is still stuggling to get its £1/2 Billion...
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Old October 6th, 2007, 01:17 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Chogmook View Post
And New Street in Brum is still stuggling to get its £1/2 Billion...
Combine that £2bn with the £3bn of the TIF money and we should have a pretty impressive transport network! The TIF bid was supposed to include funding for two more platforms at Piccadilly and some improvement works at Victoria. If these are now being done out of this extra £2bn, what will we spend it on instead?
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Old October 6th, 2007, 03:06 PM   #15
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It's not that I'm against this good idea, but it does seem unfair Manchester gets so much money towards transport projects while the rest of the country really suffers. It's so unfair. I mean Hamsphire and Leeds have had their cheaper tram proposals cancelled...

...


Kidding.



Excellent news. What is the current 'Rail Capital of the North' - I thought that was Manchester?
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Old October 6th, 2007, 05:13 PM   #16
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£2 Billion is an awful lot of money!! I don't really understand what they are going to be spending it on! Piccadilly station had aload of money spent on it afew years ago and now I'd say its one of, if not the best station in the country. Really there are bigger things than a fly over to sort out in Manchester. One is Northern Rails Trains, tin cans on wheels and then there are other smaller stations through out the Greater Manchester area that are crying out for redevelopment and I fear they will never get it until the buildings them selfs start to fall down. Oxford Road, Deansgate, Victoria, Bolton, Salford and a huge number of others could do with it more than Piccadilly. Am not saying don't spend it on Piccadilly but if you do it with one station you have to invest in the others as well!
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Old October 6th, 2007, 05:21 PM   #17
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Victoria, Salford Central and Salford Crescent are all getting large amounts of funding for redevelopment. I understand Oxford Road is also getting some funding for improvements. Victoria is getting funds from both this pot and the TIF pot. The title of this thread is misleading as the majority of the funds are going on improvements to the actual rail network around Piccadilly, including a link with Victoria, rather than going on Piccadilly itself.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 06:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irwell View Post
Victoria, Salford Central and Salford Crescent are all getting large amounts of funding for redevelopment. I understand Oxford Road is also getting some funding for improvements. Victoria is getting funds from both this pot and the TIF pot. The title of this thread is misleading as the majority of the funds are going on improvements to the actual rail network around Piccadilly, including a link with Victoria, rather than going on Piccadilly itself.
I know, but come on Irwell.

Anyway, more positive news.

Rail plans 'on right lines'
Alan Salter
6/10/2007

RAIL operators are delighted with the government's decision to consider expanding Manchester into a major rail network centre.

The M.E.N. revealed this week that ministers had asked Network Rail to conduct a feasibility study after pressure from cities as far away as Newcastle to make getting to Manchester easier and less congested.

Plans could lead to a rail link between Piccadilly and Victoria stations, plus a rail flyover south of Piccadilly, which would allow trains from the direction of Ardwick to use congested platforms 13 and 14.

Virgin, which plans to run three trains an hour to London from late next year, said: "Anything which will reduce congestion in Manchester has to be good. We look forward to the day when other operators can feed into us and we will decimate the domestic airlines."

Services to and from Scotland are soon to be taken over by TransPennine Express. A spokesman said: "We have 20 million passengers a year and a third of them go through Manchester. Capacity is an issue and we welcome this."

Heidi Mottram, managing drector of Manchester's commuter operator, Northern Rail, said: "We have attracted 20 per cent more passengers since Northern started operating in December 2004, and much of that extra demand has come in Manchester and Leeds.

"The announcement is very welcome and we look forward to working on the plans to increase capacity."

Angie Robinson, chief executive of Greater Manchester Chamber, said: "This is excellent news and something that the chamber has campaigned long and hard for.

"The announcement of the study is the next step in unlocking the huge economic potential of the north west."

Meanwhile, Victoria station is finally set for its own upgrade. A preferred bidder has been appointed to prepare detailed designs.

Network Rail has met train operator Northern, Manchester council, GMPTE/A, Chetham's School of Music and the Co-operative Insurance Society, which will all be involved with, or affected by, the work.

Outline planning consent is expected by March 2009, with a target start date of September 2009.
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Old October 6th, 2007, 07:09 PM   #19
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Agree it is a good idea and would this additional capacity mean that rail throughout the wider north would be improved and enhance wider rail journies from other locations accross the north which should be improved such as for example my native Leeds could it mean more frequent services to Liverpool and possible new services to places without direct access from Leeds such as Chester and North Wales?

Surely I would assume that this £2 billion would mean that they would instigate the reopening of Mayfield station and would there be anyway of increasing the capacity along the viaduct to the south of Manchester City Centre past Oxford Road and Deansgate stations?

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Is there any timeframe for this feasibility study?
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Old October 6th, 2007, 07:15 PM   #20
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Is there any timeframe for this feasibility study?
My understanding is that they're looking to secure funding prior to the next general election, assuming it's given the all clear.
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