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Railhub Archive
1999-12-09 SRA-001
Shadow Strategic Rail Authority


Building a better railway: proposals invited for second round of franchise replacements

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Shadow Strategic Rail Authority

Building a better railway: proposals invited for second round of franchise replacements

9 December 1999
source Shadow Strategic Rail Authority
type Press release

Existing and would be operators have today been invited by the Shadow Strategic Rail Authority to submit innovative proposals to run improved passenger rail services covering several strategically selected franchise areas where the existing franchise agreement is due to expire over the next five years.

The plans they submit need not necessarily be rigidly based on the existing franchise map, but must address and fall within the strategic areas of interest listed below:

Planning and implementing the Thameslink 2000 network of services North, South, and through central London.
Improving London commuter services and easing capacity constraints at Waterloo, Liverpool Street, and Paddington.
Relieving regional capacity bottlenecks around Birmingham and Manchester.
Introducing new services around London making use of the East, North and West London lines.
Serving the interests of Wales and the North West more effectively.
Recognising the value of inter urban trans – Pennine services.
A decision on which of the resulting proposals will be taken forward to form the basis for the second tranche of up to four franchise replacement negotiations is expected to be taken by the end of February 2000. As with the initial round of three replacements for the existing Chiltern, Connex South Central and Great North Eastern franchises which is currently underway , there will be a short pre-qualification process followed by a 60 day period during which interested parties can submit alternative proposals.

Announcing this broader approach to rail franchising, Mike Grant, the SSRA’s Chief Executive said:

" Last month we launched the franchise replacement programme.

" Today we are keeping up the momentum by indicating our approach to the second group of franchises. We will aim to select up to four franchises from this second group for which we shall invite proposals before the end of February.

"I have said previously that we do not see existing geography as a constraining factor and this is clearly demonstrated by the approach we are taking for the second group".

SSRA Chairman, Sir Alastair Morton, commented:

" I look to those both inside and outside the rail industry to meet our challenge head on and to come up with the innovative plans we are looking for to meet both the passengers’ needs and provide capacity to accomodate the current unprecedented growth in the demand for rail services".

Notes to Editors:

An announcement about the first tranche of passenger rail franchises for replacement was made by Mike Grant on 24 November 1999.
Mike Grant has written to interested parties about the criteria for the second tranche today. His letter can be viewed on out website: www.sra.gov.uk.

Railhub Archive ::: 1999-12-09 SRA-001


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