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2001-07-02 DTR-001
Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions

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Thousands of jobs and new investment brought on line by final stage of Channel Tunnel Rail Link


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Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions



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Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions

Thousands of jobs and new investment brought on line by final stage of Channel Tunnel Rail Link
_______________________________________________________________


date
2 Jul 2001 00:00
source Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions
type Press release



The Channel Tunnel Rail Link will bring tens of thousands of jobs and lever in millions of pounds worth of investment to regenerate London and the Thames Gateway said Minister for Transport John Spellar, as work today got under way on the final stage of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL).

Operating an excavator, John Spellar broke the ground at the site of the new international rail station at Stratford in London''s East End, and said:

''The Channel Tunnel Rail Link is the biggest construction project in the UK. More than two thirds of the building work on the first section is now complete and remains on time and on budget. This shows Britain can deliver major rail capital projects. Today work begins on the final section to complete the high- speed rail link with the continent. Britain''s first high-speed railway, and the first new line in the country for over a century, is becoming a reality.

''The new line will cut journey times between London and Paris from 3 hours to 2 hours 20 minutes and whisk passengers direct from city centre to city centre. The new Stratford station will tie in with London Underground, Docklands Light Railway and other main line rail routes while Kings Cross St Pancras will provide unrivalled transport connections as the biggest transport hub in Europe.

''This is a great project but goes beyond just delivering a 21st century transport infrastructure for Britain. Just as we''ve already witnessed the booming Ashford economy following the construction of an international station in the town, the CTRL and the construction of new international stations at Ebbsfleet, St Pancras and here at Stratford will bring major regeneration benefits to London and the Thames Gateway, with something in the region of 50,000 jobs and 26 million square feet of industrial, commercial and retail floorspace. Such massive investment in the future of Britain''s infrastructure means the Kings Cross St Pancras development is now the largest inner city regeneration site in Europe.

''What was a wasteland alongside the rail lines running through East London will give rise to a 133 acre site of mixed development including residential units and new retail, leisure and commercial enterprises as companies are attracted to the excellent transport infrastructure.''

Mr Spellar dug the first earth for section two which is due to be operational in 2007 and will link North Kent with St Pancras via Stratford. Stage one of the project, which is now two thirds complete, is due to open in 2003 and runs from the Channel Tunnel to Fawkham Junction via Ashford International Station.

When the entire high-speed line becomes operational in 2007 Eurostar trains will cut London to Paris journey times from around 3 hours to two hours 20 minutes. And domestic services will benefit from faster connections with the Ashford to London journey time being cut from 75 minutes to just 37 minutes. Passengers travelling from the north of the country will benefit from improved links to Eurostar services at Kings Cross St Pancras.

Notes for editors

1. The Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) offers additional benefits to domestic services.

2. Projected times for domestic journeys following the completion of the CTRL in 2007 are as follows :

Canterbury-St Pancras - 55 minutes (currently 90 minutes)

Dover-St Pancras - 70 minutes (currently 110 minutes)

Folkestone-St Pancras - 55 minutes (currently 95 minutes)

Gravesend-St Pancras - 20 minutes (currently 50 minutes)

Margate-St Pancras - 80 minutes (currently 100 minutes)

Medway Towns-St Pancras - 30 minutes (currently 45 minutes)

Ramsgate-St Pancras - 80 minutes (currently 115 minutes)

Sittingbourne-St Pancras - 50 minutes (currently 65 minutes)



Press Enquiries: 020 7944 3708; out of hours: 020 7944 5925 E-mail: press@dtlr.gov.uk Public Enquiries: 020 7944 3000 DTLR website - http://www.dtlr.gov.uk

The projected journey times for St Pancras are compared with the current fastest peak-period journey time to London terminal.




Railhub Archive ::: 2001-07-02 DTR-001





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