West Highland Line re-opens following completion of £1.6m Rannoch viaduct upgrade

West Highland Line re-opens following completion of £1.6m Rannoch viaduct upgrade

Network Rail has completed its £1.6 million project to complete essential upgrade works on Rannoch viaduct.

Work to extend the operational lifespan of the structure took place during a nine-day closure of the line, from Saturday 16 March until Monday 25 March.

The investment is part of ongoing efforts to enhance the safety and reliability of the railway for years to come.

Work included:

  • Replacing 50 longitudinal timbers (way beams) which support the rail going over the 208m steel bridge. The softwood timbers are life expired and now need to be replaced
  • Renewing the timbers with hardwood and replacing the existing baseplates and rail
  • Replacing rail throughout the structure
  • Network Rail also renewed several sections of track between Tyndrum and Roy Bridge and between Spean Bridge and Arisaig during the line closure.

In addition, engineers modernised the railway signalling system in and on the approaches to Fort William station and within the signal box.

This included moving some signalling posts and upgrading the signalling lights to LED.

Zoe Monkhouse, Network Rail’s project manager for the Rannoch viaduct project, said: “Our team has worked around-the-clock to deliver this project safely and efficiently and to get the line re-opened for passengers as planned.

“This investment will extend the lifespan of the structure, improving the long-term reliability of the line, and we are pleased to have completed the work on time. We would like to thank passengers for their patience during the project.”

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