Network Rail

Expertise identified to help shape Edinburgh Waverley revamp

Edinburgh Waverley station. Image: Network Rail

Network Rail has unveiled an internationally recognised team of engineers, architects and urban planners it has appointed to help shape the long term future of Edinburgh’s Waverley Station.

Consultants Arup will lead a group of highly experienced professionals in shaping a masterplan for Scotland’s second busiest station.

Architects Grimshaw and Allan Murray Architects, real estate experts JLL, cost consultants Gardiner and Theobald, heritage professionals Jura Consultants, and consultation specialists Streets UK make up the team.

Led in partnership by Network Rail and the City of Edinburgh Council, the Waverley Masterplan will take shape over the next twelve months. It will consider the future growth anticipated at the station, the impact of city centre developments, urban planning trends and how Waverley can be enhanced to support and encourage the future success of Scotland’s capital city.

An options appraisal will be developed to consider short, medium and long term objectives before wider consultation is undertaken with customers, user groups and other interested parties.

Guided by the masterplan steering group, the team will begin consultation with stakeholders in autumn before publishing a set of recommendations by mid-2019 which will establish a vision for the future of the station and will be used to phase forthcoming investments.

Alex Hynes, managing director of the ScotRail Alliance, which includes Network Rail Scotland, said: “Waverley has seen its footfall more than double from 10 million to over 24 million within the last ten years and estimates suggest that it will almost double again, to 40 million, by 2024. Such a steep increase is a positive indicator of the railway’s economic influence on the city and a clear sign that further investment will be required.

“We are creating additional rail provision within Waverley at present and will continue to seek new ways to create the best railway that Scotland has ever had. However, more trains mean more people and that inevitably adds to the pressure on station infrastructure and the surrounding streets.

“The Waverley Masterplan will help us to coordinate our approach and to tackle some of the issues that an increasingly busy Waverley Station raises. We’re pleased to have Arup on board to help us develop that plan.”

Lesley Macinnes, convener of the transport and environment committee, City of Edinburgh Council, said: “Waverley Station’s location in the heart of our city centre means it plays a crucial role in Edinburgh’s transport system. With population and visitor numbers forecast to grow over the coming years, it’s important that we work with partners to ensure arriving at Waverley Station is a world class experience for all residents, commuters and visitors.

“This masterplan comes at a very significant time for the capital as we work to create a city centre that truly has people at its heart. We will shortly be launching a major consultation on the Edinburgh City Centre Transformation, Low Emission Zones and City Mobility Plan, and this Waverley Masterplan forms an important part of that programme.”

Elliot Wishlade, project director for Arup, said: “Occupying a critically important site within the city, Waverley Station is a hugely important gateway to Edinburgh for all rail users including both national and international visitors. The Arup team is therefore delighted to be working with the masterplan steering group to create a vision and a plan which not only meets future travel needs but creates new and exciting facilities, spaces and infrastructure that will make this part of the city work better and be more enjoyable for everyone.

“We are looking forward to receiving inputs through the study from a wide variety of rail users, user groups, interested parties and members of the public.”

Other successful joint initiatives undertaken in major city centre stations during the last decade include Kings Cross/St. Pancras, Waterloo, Leeds, Bristol Temple Meads and Birmingham New Street.

New images reveal redeveloped Glasgow Queen Street station

Network Rail has released new computer generated images revealing Glasgow Queen Street’s bigger and brighter interior following its £120 million redevelopment due to complete in Spring 2020.

As Scotland’s third busiest station, Glasgow Queen Street is being transformed to create more space for longer eight-carriage trains – meaning more seats for passengers.

Platforms two to five are being extended out towards George Square, taking up majority of the space covered by the Victorian train shed roof. A new glass-fronted concourse, almost double the size of the existing space, is being built to accommodate the predicted increase in passenger numbers.

The new concourse design is fully accessible with entrances on George Square, Dundas Street and North Hanover Street and is filled with natural daylight. The listed Victorian train shed roof has also been carefully incorporated into the new structure and is fully exposed when viewed from platforms.

Jenna Clark, Network Rail project manager, said:  “Using these latest computer generated images, passengers at Glasgow Queen Street and the surrounding community can start to visualise how much bigger and brighter their improved station will be.

“The transformed Glasgow Queen Street is a modern building that has been carefully designed for the needs of today’s rail passengers but the Victorian train shed roof remains a key part of the structure and will be visible throughout the enhanced station.”

Externally, the train shed roof will be partially visible looking south along Queen Street and from the Cathedral Street side of the building.

Glasgow Queen Street’s transformation started last year and work is ongoing to demolish redundant buildings in front of the station to create space to extend platforms and build a new concourse.

Visible from the city’s George Square, the Millennium Hotel’s 1970’s extension – that previously hid the station – has now been removed and the eight-story Consort House tower and connecting annex have been significantly deconstructed.

With 75% of all demolition work now complete, the project team will soon start work to strengthen the foundations to support the new and improved station structure.

Work to redevelop Glasgow Queen Street will complete in Spring 2020 and the station will remain open throughout the build.

Glasgow Queen Street station’s redevelopment is part of the Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme (EGIP) – a Scottish Government investment in the railway infrastructure across central Scotland being delivered by Network Rail.

Construction body welcomes Network Rail’s contract changes

The decision by Network Rail to mandate 28-day payments to its supply chain and the introduction of Project Bank Accounts (PBAs) have been welcomed by the Specialist Engineering Contractors’ Group (SEC Group).

The trade body said it was “encouraging” to see Network Rail take the next steps in banning retentions and developing a closer and more collaborative relationship with its suppliers and sub-contractors.

SEC Group revealed its hope that Network Rail’s monitoring process will ensure such policies are trickling down their sub-contractors in all tiers and implemented vigorously.

SEC Group CEO Professor Rudi Klein said: “It is great to see large and influential public sector clients like Network Rail supporting best practice. We hope that others will follow, as there is still widespread payment abuse for SMEs in the construction and infrastructure supply chain. It will be a great lost opportunity if we do not all learn from Carillion’s failings.

“We particularly welcome Network Rail’s new monitoring processes and we would like to see their stand on retentions followed throughout their supply chain. Public sector procurement has a key part to play in reforming this outdated practice. However, until everyone abolishes retentions, we need urgently now an intervention like the Aldous Bill, to ensure that if retentions are deducted, they are protected and SMEs do not lose their cash.”

Bam Nuttall awarded £10m Highland mainline deal

Network Rail has awarded Bam Nuttall a contract for upgrade works to the Highland mainline – to help reduce journey times for customers.

The £10 million deal is part of an overall £57m Scottish Government-funded investment in the line linking Inverness and the Central Belt.

The contract will involve extending platforms 1 and 2 at Pitlochry station and carrying out modifications to extend the track layout.

Infrastructure works will also be carried out at Aviemore station – extending the loop (section of double-track) to the north of the station.

In addition, signalling systems at Pitlochry and Aviemore will also be altered and upgraded as part of the overall project.

These works will enable ScotRail’s longer InterCity trains (HSTs), which will start to be introduced on the route later this year, to pass each other more efficiently at both stations.

The work will help deliver an hourly service, with average journey times reduced by around 10 minutes. It will also enable potential improvements to the times of the first and last trains between Inverness and the Central Belt and to provide a better distribution of calls at the intermediate stations between Perth and Inverness.

This is the second phase of investment in the Highland mainline. In 2012, the initial phase of the project increased the number of services from nine to 11 trains per day in each direction.

Humza Yousaf, minister for transport and the islands, said: “The awarding of the Highland mainline works contact is an important milestone in the progress of the project, which is on track to complete in little over a year.

“The works planned to take place at Aviemore and Pitlochry allow for far more efficient crossing of trains, which along with the soon-to-be-introduced HSTs and infrastructure enhancements, will deliver faster more frequent journeys between Inverness and the Central Belt.”

Matthew Spence, route delivery director for Network Rail, said: “This work is vital to the introduction of InterCity trains on the line and the improved timetable that will deliver more services, improve stopping patterns and provide better connectivity for customers.

“Throughout this project we will work closely with our contractors, train operators and other partners to deliver in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible while minimising disruption for both lineside communities and passengers.”

Jerry Dickson, regional director Bam Nuttall, added: “We are delighted to have been awarded this contract and look forward to delivering this important enhancement to the Highland mainline.

“Our team will be looking for opportunities to work with the local community to identify opportunities to leave a positive lasting legacy from the work at both stations.”

Masterplan initiative seeks new vision for Waverley

A new Masterplan is to be developed to outline a long term vision Edinburgh’s Waverley Station.

The Waverley Masterplan will consider the future growth anticipated at the station, the impact of city centre developments on how people use it and how it can play its part in the continued success of Scotland’s capital city.

The Masterplan is being led in partnership by station owner Network Rail and City of Edinburgh Council who have formed a group comprising Transport Scotland, VisitScotland, Scottish Enterprise, Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce and other neighbouring property owners.

The group’s first aim is to understand how future growth is likely to impact footfall within the station and on the streets outside. An options appraisal will be developed to consider short, medium and long term objectives before wider consultation is undertaken with customers, user groups and other interested parties.

An initial study is expected to begin this summer, with more details made available on how to contribute to the process.

Alex Hynes, managing director of the ScotRail Alliance, which includes Network Rail Scotland, said: “Waverley has seen its footfall more than double from 10 million to over 24 million within the last ten years and estimates suggest that it will almost double again, to 40 million, by 2024. Such a steep increase is a positive indicator of the railway’s economic influence on the city and a clear sign that further investment will be required.

“We are creating additional rail provision within Waverley at present and will continue to seek new ways to create the best railway that Scotland has ever had. However, more trains mean more people and that inevitably adds to the pressure on station infrastructure and the surrounding streets.

“The Waverley Masterplan will help us to coordinate our approach and to tackle some of the issues that an increasingly busy Waverley Station raises. One organisation cannot manage this in isolation, so it is a welcome step forward to be working with City of Edinburgh Council and our other partners in the development of this plan.”

Lesley Macinnes, convener of the transport and environment committee, City of Edinburgh Council, said: “Waverley Station’s location in the heart of our city centre means it plays a crucial role in the city’s transport system. With population and visitor numbers forecast to grow over the coming years, we need to work with partners to ensure we manage these increased numbers both in the station and in the city centre as a whole to deliver the best possible experience for all residents, commuters and tourists.”

Transport minister Humza Yousaf said: “I am delighted that the combined expertise and energies of a range of parties have been brought together by the City of Edinburgh Council and Network Rail to create a long term vision for the station and its surrounding area.  Edinburgh Waverley is the first impression for many as they arrive in our capital city. It is both a portal to the city and wider Scotland. We’ve seen the positive difference that the redevelopment of major stations can have economically, socially and aesthetically. Accordingly, I look forward to developments at Waverley with considerable interest.”

The Edinburgh Waverley Masterplan follows in the footsteps of other successful joint initiatives undertaken in other major city centre stations. Kings Cross/St. Pancras, Waterloo, Leeds, Bristol Temple Meads and Birmingham New Street have all been through similar processes during the last decade.

Enhanced Queen Street Station development given £80m investment boost

Another £80 million is set to be invested into new plans being taken forward for the regeneration of Queen Street Station in Glasgow.

Working in partnership with various stakeholders, Scottish Ministers have decided to progress a greatly enhanced development at the North Hanover Street car park site of the station.

The new plans include extensive retail, food and beverage opportunities, and will also deliver a development deck upon which further private sector investment can be taken forward.

Unveiling the alternative plans to the public, transport minister Humza Yousaf said: “The new proposal will help deliver a 21st century station acting as a catalyst for further private sector investment. Alongside the redevelopment of Queen Street station being delivered as part of the Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme (EGIP) this will see a significant improvement to the overall passenger experience and deliver significant economic benefits to the city.”

Queen Street Station has been undergoing a £100m makeover since last August.

The redevelopment of Queen Street is part of the wider Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme, a Scottish Government investment in the central belt’s rail infrastructure, and is being delivered by Network Rail.

It will mean an increase in capacity for the station and space for longer trains, so more passengers can travel with ease.

The new below-deck development will provide around 3,800 square metres for such facilities, in comparison to the 500 square metres which would have been provided by the partially constructed project. The layout of the retail, food and beverage outlets will be largely in accordance with previously consented plans.

Projected rental income from the revised plan sees a potential increase from circa £370k with the original proposal per annum to £2.2 million – £2.7 million per annum.

Works continue on redeveloping the main station building as part of the EGIP with the recent commencement of the main demolition works of Consort House which is needed to make space for the new Queen Street station frontage.

The revised plan, whilst not part of EGIP, will have no detrimental impact on the delivery of the EGIP key milestones.

Alex Hynes, ScotRail Alliance managing director, said: “We look forward to working with the Scottish Government, and other commercial partners, on this ambitious vision for Queen Street. We’re building the best railway Scotland has ever had and these plans will deliver an exciting new development for our customers and the people of Glasgow.

“The station is currently being transformed to allow new longer, faster and greener electric trains to run on our railway and the plans announced today will help to ensure Queen Street continues to play a central role in the social and economic life of the city.”

Councillor Susan Aitken, leader of Glasgow City Council, added: “The revised plans for Queen Street Station will deliver far greater local economic benefit, securing the full potential of the site and will provide significant employment opportunities once the development deck has been fully delivered. The redevelopment will both give the station a retail offer befitting one of Scotland’s busiest transport hubs and provide a striking entry into the city for travellers coming to Glasgow.”

Contractors sought for trio of Network Rail upgrades

Network Rail has started searching for firms to help deliver up to £5 billion of track works across the UK over the next 10 years.

The company will launch a pre-qualification period for the tender in May to let the next generation of track infrastructure contracts. Three alliances will cover the following areas;

  • Alliance 1: North (Scotland Route)
  • Alliance 2: Central (London North West, and London North East & East Midland Routes)
  • Alliance 3: South (Anglia, Southeast, Wessex, Western, and Wales Routes)

During the next five-year funding period (2019 – 2024), own as Control Period 6 (CP6), Network Rail will undertake a significant infrastructure investment programme and is inviting bids from a from a wide range of suppliers who can illustrate relevant expertise.

Overall, the contracts will cover the development, design and delivery of plain line and  switches & crossings, as well as associated infrastructure works. Three alliances will be formed between Network Rail and consortia comprising a minimum of one construction contractor and one designer.

Given the large scale and long-term nature of the contracts, Network Rail said it will be essential for prospective bidders to exhibit their commitment to delivering value through the ‘relentless pursuit of excellence’, ‘highly innovative approaches’, and a ‘demonstrable track record of success in collaborative environments’.

Steve Featherstone, Network Rail’s director for track, said: “This tender represents a major milestone in the development of our strategy for our track infrastructure investment programme.

“It also represents a significant commitment by Network Rail to the rail industry and we are expecting high levels of interest in these contracts from the supply chain. In return, we will be looking for clear and firm commitments from the supply chain to deliver value for Network Rail.”

A supplier engagement briefing for interested suppliers is scheduled to take place at an unnamed venue on April 23.

Consort House demolition work begins at Glasgow Queen Street

Engineers have begun demolishing Consort House as redundant buildings in front of Glasgow Queen Street make way for the new-look station

Demolition works are underway at Glasgow Queen Street to create space for the new railway station.

Engineers have started levelling Consort House as the building and the adjoining Millennium Hotel extension need to be removed to make way for the new station frontage, concourse and entrances and new longer platforms.

Light-weight excavators have now been craned over 30 metres onto the roof to starting breaking up the building’s reinforced concrete and steel frame floor-by-floor.

Inside Queen Street, work is underway to extend platform one by 50 metres. The former ticket office/staff accommodation block on platform two has also been demolished.

Over the coming months, Network Rail said undertrack drainage will be created and foundations for overhead power masts will be installed, before 100 tonnes of ballast and 50 metres of new sleepers/rails are laid to create the space needed for four-car trains to use the platform.

The redeveloped Glasgow Queen Street station is scheduled to be complete in 2020. The project is being delivered as part of the Scottish Government-funded Edinburgh-Glasgow Improvement Programme.

Alex Hynes, ScotRail Alliance managing director, said: “We are transforming Glasgow Queen Street and using a unique method to demolish these redundant buildings to create the space we need to construct a new landmark for Glasgow.

“Extending platform one and increasing its capacity from three to four carriage trains is also an important step in our plan to introduce more electric trains to Queen Street.

“The station redevelopment, and the recently completed electrification of the main Edinburgh-Glasgow line, are all part of our plan to build the best railway Scotland has ever had – delivering longer, faster trains with more seats.”

Contingency plans take hold in wake of Carillion collapse

Carillion is part of a coalition delivering the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR)

Clients and joint ventures partners of collapsed contractor Carillion have taken steps to begin contingency plans after the firm entered compulsory liquidation today.

An application was made to the High Court for a compulsory liquidation of the UK’s second largest construction company before opening of business this morning after talks with the UK government to save the company were unsuccessful.

The firm had been involved in the £745 million Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR) and had contracts with Registers of Scotland, the Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration, West of Scotland Housing Association and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde among many others.

Network Rail awarded Carillion a contract last year to deliver platform extension works and the firm is also responsible for two facilities management contracts worth £158m with the Ministry of Defence (MoD) which cover 83 military sites in Scotland.

Contingency plans have now been put into effect with the hope to minimise disruption to the projects.

Galliford Try is in joint venture with Carillion and Balfour Beatty on the construction of the £550m section of the AWPR between Balmedie and Tipperty for Transport Scotland.

“The Scottish Government are in discussions with the liquidators and the UK government to support Carillion employees and secure the completion of contracts.”

Economy secretary Keith Brown

Galliford Try said: “The terms of the contract are such that the remaining joint venture members, Balfour Beatty and Galliford Try, are obliged to complete the contract.  Our current estimate of the additional cash contribution outstanding from Carillion to complete the project is £60-80m, of which any shortfall will be funded equally between the joint venture members. The companies will discuss the position urgently with the official receiver of Carillion and Transport Scotland, to minimise any impact on the project.”

A Transport Scotland spokesman reiterated the bypass project will be completed by the spring.

He said: “We expect that any impact on the AWPR will be mitigated by the fact that Carillion’s construction partners are joint and severally liable and as such, the other two construction partners remain fully responsible for the completion of the works.

“Aberdeen Roads Limited, the construction joint venture for the project, confirmed recently that they remain committed to the delivery of this project.”

Amey has incorporated joint ventures with Carillion to deliver the regional prime and national housing contracts for the MoD, through the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO). These contracts maintain the MOD estate in the UK.

It said: “The terms of the joint ventures’ arrangements mean that Amey will continue the services now that Carillion has announced it is entering into immediate compulsory liquidation. Amey is committed to doing this and ensuring continuity of service to the DIO and MOD and the service men and women in the UK.

“For the past few weeks, Amey has been working on detailed contingency plans with the DIO and the Cabinet Office to ensure it can effectively continue to manage the contracts and these are being implemented today.

“Amey confirms it is fully prepared to continue the service obligation of the contracts without adverse effect on the employees of the joint ventures or the supply chain.”

Network Rail commissioned Carillion for both the Waverley platforms extension project and the electrification of the railway line through Shotts.

In addition, the firm was also contracted for platform works at Broughty Ferry and Aberdeen railway stations.

Carillion Powerlines secured an £11.6m contract to carry out electrification work on the Shotts line in December

A Network Rail spokesman said: “We are activating our contingency plans as a result of this unfortunate news.

“We will be working closely with the administrators and Carillion’s management team to ensure projects that they are working on continue and that the supply chain is maintained for this important work.

“Our aim is to ensure that this news has as little impact as possible on our projects to grow and expand the railway network.”

Kier Group, which currently operates joint ventures involving Carillion on HS2 and the Highways England smart motorways programme, jobs, will now have to take them on alone or seek a new partner.

A Kier spokeswoman said: “We have put in place contingency plans for each of these projects and are working closely with clients so as to achieve continuity of service.

“Following today’s announcement and after a short period of transition for these contracts, we do not expect there to be an adverse financial impact on the group arising from these joint venture contracts.”

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) said that it was “taking steps to secure the future of the 1,400 Carillion apprentices” by redeploying them to other firms.

CITB chief executive, Sarah Beale, said: “The news of Carillion entering insolvency is clearly a significant blow to the UK construction sector. While this will present the sector with a number of challenges, CITB’s priority is to do all it can to ensure that Carillion apprentices can continue their training so their skills are not lost.

“We have established a project team to work with the apprentices and will be offering in principle grant and apprenticeship transfer incentives to our employer base in order to retain these learners. We will be working closely with the ESFA, the official receiver and our network of college providers so that every possible support is in place to help these apprentices continue their training. We will be liaising with the official receiver with a view to contacting the apprentices as soon as possible.”

The Scottish Government said it is in talks to support Carillion employees and secure the completion of contracts in Scotland.

Cabinet secretary for the economy, Keith Brown, said: “Our first thoughts are with those Carillion employees who will be concerned for their jobs today and we are in discussions with the liquidators and the UK government regarding the measures they intend to put in place regarding private sector, Network Rail and UK govternment-backed contracts in Scotland to support Carillion employees and to secure the completion of these contracts.

“The Scottish Government has been working to manage or eliminate risks associated with Carillion’s difficulties since July last year and we have contingency plans in place for affected contracts, including the AWPR where the contract contains a mechanism for the remaining two joint venture partners to deliver the project and we expect that work to continue.

“I have spoken to the Secretary of State for Scotland this morning and my officials have also spoken with PwC to establish the situation and should it be necessary we stand ready to support for any affected employees through our Partnership Action for Continuing Employment (PACE) initiative which aims to minimise the time individuals affected by redundancy are out of work.”

Unfinished Glasgow Queen Street Station building ‘could be knocked down’

How the Glasgow Queen Street Station will look once completed

A partially constructed building that forms part of the Glasgow Queen Street Station project could be demolished as officials consider a larger development, according to reports.

Transport Scotland has ordered a review of the building in the car park, for rail staff and shops, as part of expanding the station to accommodate new electric trains on the main line to Edinburgh this year. The trains are finally due to start running in March, but other delays to the £800 million Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme (Egip) have already put back completion of the station until 2020.

Now The Scotsman has reported that officials are considering bringing down part of the ongoing project in favour of a larger development in the car park.

According to the newspaper, the estimated cost of the U-turn is between £3m and £15m.

Network Rail said: “We have paused work while we explore potential changes to the scope with the Scottish Government.

“If the discussions result in a new development, then we’d most likely have to remove the steelwork.”

Transport Scotland said it would not delay longer trains and faster journeys in December, platforms being extended by December 2019 and the station concourse and frontage being completed by spring 2020.

A spokeswoman said: “Following the conclusion of Scottish minister-led discussions, options for an alternative development at the North Hanover Street site are being explored. These are expected to conclude in the coming weeks.

“All other works continue as planned.”