The Scottish Government has signed an agreement with Network Rail for the building of a new Borders Railway connecting Edinburgh and Tweedbank.
The new rail link will be 30 miles long with seven stations and will be completed by 2015. Says Transport Minister Keith Brown, ‘The official handover of the Borders project to Network Rail marks a milestone in our efforts to provide a fast and efficient rail link that will significantly contribute to the area’s economy.’
The Borders Railway will re-establish passenger railway services for the first time in over 40 years from Edinburgh through Midlothian to Tweedbank in the Scottish Borders. The original line continued right through to Carlisle. Passengers will be able to travel direct from Tweedbank to Edinburgh Waverley in less than an hour at peak times.
‘We’re proud to be delivering this prestigious project and look forward to delivering what will be a hugely important new asset for Midlothian and the Scottish Borders,’ says David Simpson, route managing director for Network Rail Scotland.
Passenger trains last ran on the Carlisle-Edinburgh route in 1969. The project became mired in controversy when two other consortia dropped out of the bidding process. Network Rail is confident the new railway can be delivered on time and on budget. The contract was signed in Scotland’s National Mining Museum at Newtongrange in Midlothian.