So the much needed electrification of routes out of Manchester will after all take place, despite the Spending Review, though there is some anger that the time for the work has been extended so that it won't be finished until 2016 at the earliest.
With GWML electrification back on as far as Cardiff (but not Swansea) and a study into electrifying the Welsh Valleys lines perhaps we are entering a golden age of electrification. Though MML will only be assesed again in 5 years time.
You can add Ordsall too, Piccadilly-Salford Central, I dont know if their doing the bit to Salford Crescent or not though. I also think North Western to Bryn is covered by the Liverpool-Wigan electrification though someone may correct me?
If I remember right loadings are around 20% from Man Air, 80% from Man Pic, 60% from Bolton 40/50% Preston then rises again to near full gradually at it plows through Scotland. Basically half the passengers are only travelling between Manchester/Bolton/Preston.
Thats the speed today, they are partly increasing the line speed of Chat Moss and the junction speeds, the services will be replaced with additional services to Blackburn and Preston. Really I think they just dont want to lose the revenue from commuters Manchester-Bolton (where their packed), the TPE consultation response their reporting as 'news' was also way back in 2009 and GMPTE/Bolton council didnt object.
Its always a compromise between what needs doing and the resources available to do it.
Eccles – Following a site meeting in January 2011 between GMPTE, Salford City Council (SCC), Friends of Eccles Station (FRECCLES), Network Rail and Northern Rail a scope of works has been agreed to be taken forward. The scope focuses on providing a new/enhanced ticket office in its current location. Northern Rail advise that the initial findings with regards design, feasibility and costs should be available in spring 2011.
Theyve just finished rebuilding the ticket office, extending the platform canopies so they cover the area between the platform access steps and the existing canopies, renovating the cafe, waiting room and other platform buildings. In the future they are moving the main bus station next door to the station and building an elevated walkway to connect the two.
They did a costing exercise on a post electrification shuttle service to Preston to see the shape of future services and they were surpised to find that running an hourly diesel service to Manchester Airport (under the wires almost the entire length) had a vastly better BCR than a simple diesel shuttle. probably convinced them they should electrify it instead and end the diesel island.
I presume Locke knows their considering an option like extending electrification to Stalybridge and building the sidings there but he cant tell us because of confidentiality. I dont see the advantage, thats an awful lot of empty stock thats going to be trundling the short distance Victoria to Stalybridge to terminate multiple times every day, for years. Must eventually add up to a hell of a lot of wasted money.
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