Midlands Rail Hub

On the 5th December 2022, we launched our Outline Business case for Midlands Rail Hub. You can watch a full recording of the event here:

The Midlands Rail Hub - our flagship project - is the biggest upgrade of our rail network for a generation.

What is Midlands Rail Hub?

Midlands Rail Hub is the region’s biggest and most ambitious rail improvement scheme - a £900m - £1.5bn blueprint for faster, better and more frequent connections across the Midlands.

Passenger rail usage in the Midlands is growing faster than anywhere else in the UK, but without investment, the region's rail network can't keep pace with this record demand, and many services remain slow and infrequent. Historically, turning rail projects from concept to reality has been a long and frustrating process. We’re keen to break this cycle by securing the future of this project now and planning for its delivery.

The scheme will add more than 14 million more seats on the rail network each year and provide faster, more frequent or new rail links for over 30 locations including: Birmingham, Bromsgrove, Nuneaton, Worcester, Hereford, Cardiff, Bristol, Cheltenham and Leicester. It will also bring 1.6 million more people to within an hour of the region’s biggest towns and cities by public transport.

Our plans for a modern rail network for the Midlands

The Midlands Rail Hub proposes building two ‘chords’ as well as 11 further engineering interventions throughout the region to deliver a massive step change in rail transport in the Midlands.

The West Chord: consists of improvements between Bordesley and Moor Street, allowing access to Birmingham Moor Street from South-West and Wales, and making sure services are improved on the Hereford and Worcester corridors.

The East Chord: creates an access to Birmingham Moor Street from the East Midlands.

Other plans for engineering upgrades include:

  • Snow Hill platform 4
  • Moor Street platform 5
  • Improvements around Kings Norton-Barnt Green
  • Stoke Works junction
  • A Malvern Wells turnback facility
  • Ledbury – Shelwick partial double-tracking
  • Moor Street platforms A & B (east side)
  • Bordesley viaduct widening
  • Water Orton remodelling
  • Nuneaton to Wigston signalling headways
  • Freight loops between Nuneaton and Leicester.

What are the benefits?

  • More rail journeys: The scheme will add more than 14 million more seats on the rail network each year
  • Shorter journey times for lines from Birmingham to places like Worcester, Cardiff and Hereford
  • Links to HS2: Enhances access to HS2 for over 1.6 million people
  • Boost economic growth: For every pound we invest, we generate over £1.50 in benefits, inclusive of those to the wider economy
  • Environmentally friendly: Each parcel or person moved by rail instead of by diesel/petrol vehicle creates 76% less CO2
  • Safeguard jobs: Maximise the benefits of HS2 and safeguard 1,600 jobs in the engineering and construction sector.

What happens next?

The importance of Midlands Rail Hub was also reinforced by the Transport Select Committee’s review in July 2022, emphasising the need for the scheme to be delivered in full.

On the 5th December 2022, we submitted our Outline Business case to the Department for Transport. You can read a summary of this report by clicking here. Subject to funding, the project could begin construction as early as 2025 and be completed by 2030.

Support for the Midlands Rail Hub

“The Midlands Rail Hub is a vitally-important project. Rail has been a huge part of the success story of this region, and we need this kind of investment if our network is to keep growing and supporting our economy. At around £2 billion, the Midlands Rail Hub is genuinely a bargain. The Secretary of State for Transport must persuade the Treasury to support this project to boost the region’s connectivity and with it, the region’s economy”.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands

Midlands Connect,
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Email: mcadmin@midlandsconnect.uk

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Email: ciarajagger@midlandsconnect.uk

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