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FOWS input to Network Rail’s “Manchester Hub” planning

January 13, 2010

Network Rail have been holding an open consultation exercise on long-term, ambitious plans for modernising the Manchester rail network, and in particular increasing capacity through the choked city centre area.

FOWS have submitted a report to Network Rail laying out our aspirations for the development of the railway line and services through Walkden, and you can download our report from the FOWS website.

The principal objectives we have asked that Network Rail try to deliver for Walkden are:
* Continued investment in substantial improvements to station infrastructure and environment, including staffing and passenger facilities
* Greatly improved station access for cyclists, bus passengers and motorists and a safer environment for pedestrian access
* Longer, more frequent trains operated by modern, ultimately electric, rolling stock

And in terms of the train services provided we have suggested Network Rail aim to provide:
* Weekday peak frequencies at least quarter hourly of which at least one should serve Piccadilly and Manchester Airport
* Off peak services every 20 minutes (including an hourly Piccadilly/Airport service)
* Half hourly services on Sundays and in the evenings – one to be an all stations service from Victoria and one Airport-Southport semi fast (or similar route serving Piccadilly and Oxford Road, for example from Buxton)

Of course we understand rail development is a complex, long-term, and expensive business, but by making our goals for Walkden station clear to Network Rail we hope to improve the station’s passengers chances of seeing benefits in the years ahead.

Why not let us know what you think our goals should be ? Just post a comment to this blog and tell us what improvements would be most important to you ?

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