Published on : Tuesday, January 3, 2017
A new platform at Cardiff Central station, designed to help ease congestion, has officially been opened today .Network Rail Chief Executive Mark Carne, Route Managing Director of Network Rail Wales Andy Thomas and the project team were joined by guest of honour Ken Skates AM, Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure, to witness one of the first trains departing from the platform at the opening event this afternoon.
The brand new platform 8, located above the modern south-side entrance building at the station also includes a new waiting area and customer information desk and is all part of the £300m Cardiff area signalling renewals project to modernise the Cardiff and Valleys network.
The upgrade works are the largest signalling phase of its kind to be commissioned on the rail network with the work due to be fully commissioned tomorrow, Tuesday, January 3, all part of Network Rail’s Railway Upgrade Plan.Passengers travelling on the Penarth, Barry Island and Vale of Glamorgan lines will now depart from the new platform.
The track for Platform 8 together with the new signalling system will be bi-directional and will enable trains to depart westwards from Platforms 7 and 8 simultaneously, improving the operational capacity of the line.The new platform will immediately ease congestion and gives the potential for more services to run in the Cardiff area.
Mark Carne, Network Rail Chief Executive said: “Cardiff is a fantastic, vibrant city and deserves a better railway. That’s why we’ve just completed a major upgrade to the station, the tracks and the signalling. Commuters and tourists to Wales will now have better more reliable services and there will be new trains coming in the next year too. All part of the biggest railway upgrade in generations.
“I would like to thank passengers for their patience while we delivered this upgrade work.”
Ken Skates, Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure said:
“The Cardiff area signalling renewals scheme is an important programme of upgrade work and investment for Cardiff and the south Wales area.”This project will significantly benefit the South Wales area by providing better connectivity for passengers to travel for both work and leisure.
“The Welsh Government is keen to see greater investment in rail infrastructure improvements on the Welsh network to maximise economic growth in towns and cities right across the country.”