Scotland’s rail decarbonization program moves forward with £140m funding announcement

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The Scottish Government has confirmed funding of £140m for the delivery of the East Kilbride Enhancement electrification project, which is part of the government’s wider plans to decarbonize passenger services across Scotland’s Railway.

In addition, Scottish transport minister, Fiona Hyslop confirmed that the Barrhead route electrification and associated station improvement works remain on track for completion in December this year.

This latest funding commitment demonstrates continued progress with the Scottish Government’s rolling program of railway electrification as a key element of transport decarbonization.

Hyslop said, “I am very pleased to confirm that I have now approved full funding for the completion of the East Kilbride Enhancement Project. This will deliver electrification of the route, a new intermodal transport hub at Hairmyres, a new accessible station at East Kilbride, accessibility works at other stations and a 1.4km extension of the Hairmyres double track section to enhance operational performance and flexibility of service on the route.

“This £140m commitment from the Scottish Government will contribute to our net zero objectives and will enable the introduction of greener, faster, and more comfortable electric trains on the route from December 2025. In addition, the Glasgow to Barrhead line will see electric services operating on the route from December 2023.”

Alex Hynes, managing director of Scotland’s Railway added, “This project will enhance a key transport corridor, providing a more reliable, more inclusive and greener railway for our customers. 

“The electrification of the East Kilbride line is the next phase of our rolling program of decarbonization, creating more environmentally friendly travel options for communities throughout Scotland.”

The Railway Industry Association (RIA) in Scotland, which represents the Scottish rail supply community, welcomed the two key announcements. David Clarke, RIA Scotland director, said, “We hope this is a step towards funding of the next stages of the Decarbonisation Action Plan. This project will enhance a key transport corridor, providing a more reliable, more inclusive, and greener railway. The rail supply chain is committed to cost effective project delivery and RIA Scotland look forward to engaging in the conversation about the role private investment can play in Scotland’s Railway.”