North East Wales

A £36m Wrexham to Chester rail project is set to cut journey times

Railway tracks
Image caption The works are expected to be completed by early 2015

A £36m investment in the railway line between Wrexham and Chester is set to cut journey times and increase train services.

Parts of the new track will have speeds of up to 90mph (114km/h).

Seven miles (11km) of track, which has been a single line since the 1980s, is being re-doubled as part of the north-south Wales journey time project funded by the Welsh government.

The works are expected to be completed by early 2015.

Re-doubling the line has been one of Wrexham council's strategic rail objectives and has been a priority of Taith, the regional transport consortia, for some time.

David Bithell, lead member for transport and the environment with Wrexham council, said the news was "excellent" and indicated the importance of the route.

"Our elected members' rail group has lobbied directly, and through Taith, for investment and improvements to this section of railway," he said.

The scheme will also mean improved journey times between Gobowen and Shrewsbury with an increase in line speed up to 90 mph, at a further cost of £9.8m.

Mr Bithell added: "When these improvements are completed we will have the potential to investigate new stations and for increasing the number of trains from hourly to every 30 minutes.

"With the consistent rise in passenger number at all our stations, we will continue to press for increased services to more destinations."

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