£130m new Oxford-London rail link approved

Aaron Morby 11 years ago
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A new rail link between Oxford and London Marylebone via Bicester is set to open in 2015 after the government gave the green light to the £130m scheme. 

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin  approved a Transport and Works Act order allowing the project to proceed after accepting proposed measures to protect bats which use Wolvercote Tunnel in Oxford as a roost.

The line will be the first new rail link between London and a major British city for 100 years.

Bicester Town station will be rebuilt as part of Chiltern Railways’ Evergreen 3 project linking Oxford and London. A new station will also be built  next to the Water Eaton park-and-ride centre in north Oxford

The route, from London’s Marylebone station, will  follow the existing line to Birmingham before branching west on to half a mile of new track that will link it to a rarely used line between Bicester and Oxford.

The project will upgrade 10 miles of dilapidated track on that line and see the building of two stations – the replacement of one at Bicester and a new one in north Oxford.

Graham Cross, Chiltern Railways’ business development dir­ector, said it had taken more than two years to get planning approval.

He said: “We’re pleased to have been granted the power to proceed with this significant railway investment, which will benefit thousands of commuters and businesses in Oxfordshire.”

 

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