Work to complete the Borders Railway project remains on track as the final stages of the scheme get underway.
The Borders Railway project – which will reportedly bring £33 million worth of benefits to the local economy – comprises the construction of four new stations in Midlothian, with a further three stations built in the Scottish Borders. The £294 million Borders Railway project – which is being implemented by Transport Scotland – has been underway since 2012 and reaches completion this summer.
Borders Railway is the longest new domestic railway to be constructed in Britain for more than 100 years and has been implemented by Transport Scotland. The project has been designed to support the Scottish Government’s strategy of providing a more reliable transport connection and will see a reduction in journey times and an increase in services.
Work began on the final phase of the project in April 2015, with Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) being utilised extensively. During the work, surplus material excavated during the construction of the railway is being transported from the Ferniehirst area, through Stow, to Falahill. The material will then be used to complete the landscaping work at Falahill.
During the works, the Old Stage Road (the C11) has been closed between Ferniehirst and Stow to allow this final phase of earth movements to be completed. During this phase the movements of the HGVs are being monitored with the use of six banksmen, with four located within the village of Stow.
Hugh Wark, Borders Railway Project Manager, Network Rail, said:
“These earthworks are an essential step. The works involve the use of HGV vehicles which we are closely controlling. We appreciate the potential inconvenience caused during these works and we will work hard to minimise disruption to the community as far as practically possible.
“We encourage motorists to show due care and attention and thank local communities for their patience whilst this work is underway.”
The Borders Railway project follows the route of the historic Waverly Railway line – a route which has since become popular with cyclists. With the railway coming back into existence some of the cycle paths have now been lost, so as well as the creation of a new line, Midlothian and Scottish Borders Councils are spending approximately £2.5m to provide replacement paths and bicycle routes. In addition, the new trains which will operate on the route will include more provisions for cyclists wishing to travel to the area with their bikes, including cycle hoops at every station.
Once work is complete on the Borders Railway project it is hoped that the new line will significantly reduce local residents’ reliance on their vehicles, which in turn will reduce carbon emissions. The railway will help reduce the increasing problem of congestion on the main roads between the Borders & Edinburgh and will also reduce motor accidents.
For more information about the Borders Railway project, please visit: www.bordersrailway.co.uk.
Hedson Rail offers a bespoke service to the rail industry to match individual client’s needs and is now well established. The firm comprises of industry experts specialising in the delivery of Civil, Track,, OLE and Signalling projects for a number of Tier 1 clients and contractors around the UK, Asia and Australasia.
Hedson Rail has worked on a number of projects including Reading Station Area Redevelopment, Great Western Electrification, numerous Crossrail projects and the East Kent Re-signalling scheme. Recently Hedson Rail worked on the Borders Rail Project assisting with stressing management of the scheme including stress design, planning, delivery and Quality Assurance.
We caught up with company Director Robert Johnson, he commented:
“It was important for us to be involved with this flagship scheme and critical we help the success of the programme through completing our committed milestones. The project was of great importance for the surrounding communities as it opened up an additional pipeline of transport into the region. The project was unique to work on giving great experience for the team.
“We pride ourselves in being able to identify issues and fix problems for short, medium and long term projects across all disciplines. We understand the market and the industry.”