Glasgow & West Scotland

Tram-train and light rail plans for Glasgow Airport link

Glasgow Airport Image copyright Glasgow Airport

Plans for a rail link between Glasgow Airport and the city centre have been revived with two options in the frame.

One scheme, costing £144.3m, would see tram-train carriages run from Glasgow Central to the airport via Paisley.

The other £102m option would see a new light rail system installed between Paisley Gilmour Street and the airport.

A previous £120m plan was scrapped in 2009. Any new scheme will be paid for through the £1.13bn city deal fund from the UK and Scottish governments.

Glasgow City Council leader Frank McAveety said a rail link was essential to the economic prosperity of the area.

'Economic powerhouse'

"Glasgow and the Clyde Valley is the economic powerhouse of Scotland and Glasgow Airport plays a crucial role in the continued growth of the region," he said.

"We've long argued that a new rail link between the airport and the city centre is essential for the thousands of tourists and business travellers who fly into and out of Glasgow every day.

"The airport already supports thousands of jobs but this new rail link, which is the single biggest element of our city deal, will be the catalyst that takes us to a new level, vastly improving the customer experience and generating even more jobs and inward investment."

Previous plans for a £120m Glasgow Airport rail link were scrapped in 2009 by the Scottish government, which said the scheme was unaffordable in the face of budget cuts imposed by the UK government.

Image copyright Other
Image caption The original rail link plan was scrapped in 2009

The proposal was revived, however, when the UK and Scottish governments funded a £1.13bn city deal for Glasgow and the Clyde Valley.

Under the deal, Westminster and Holyrood give £500m each in additional funding to the area for infrastructure investment.

The eight councils - East Renfrewshire, Glasgow, Inverclyde, Renfrewshire, East Dunbartonshire, West Dunbartonshire, North Lanarkshire and South Lanarkshire - then supplement this by borrowing £130m.

The new options for the rail link are being led by Glasgow and Renfrewshire Councils which have developed a business case for each.

These will be put before councillors in both authorities before going to the Glasgow and Clyde Valley Cabinet for approval in December.

If approved, further work would be done to develop more detail on both options before a final, preferred choice is made next year.

The tram-train option would offer a 16.5-minute direct journey between the city centre and the front door of the airport.

Construction on this could start in 2021 with the service being operational by 2025.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites