Enabling work near-complete on ‘vital’ East-West rail link

Published: 4 Oct 2018


Tagged: ,

Mainline railway in Oxfordshire

Enabling works are near completion on a key section of the former “Varsity Line” between Oxford and Cambridge today, reaching a milestone in meeting the National Infrastructure Commission’s recommendations for supporting future economic prosperity across the growth arc.

The Commission’s “Partnering for Prosperity” report, published nearly a year ago, highlighted the need to improve both road and rail links between Oxford and Cambridge.  This would help deliver one million homes across the arc by 2050 and create vibrant communities, while at the same time maintaining the area’s natural beauty.

When complete, these enabling works will mean construction on the Western end of the East-West rail line – covering Oxford, Bicester, Aylesbury, Milton Keynes and Bedford – will be able to start from September next year.

It follows confirmation of the preferred corridor for the new Oxford-Cambridge Expressway, all as part of wider efforts to meet the economic potential identified by the Commission in its report.

A National Infrastructure Commission spokesman said:

“The near-completion of enabling works means real progress can be made in delivering the vital transport links between Oxford, Milton Keynes and Bedford, and can continue on to Cambridge.

“As our report highlighted, this and the Oxford-Cambridge Expressway together have the potential to help deliver one million homes by 2050, creating vibrant communities and supporting future economic growth.

“And as the Growth Arc continues to attract the brightest and best in some of the most high-tech industries, this will benefit both the area and the country as a whole.”

Notes to Editors:

Partnering for Prosperity was published on 17 November 2017 and can be found here

Share this article


Recent Articles

Coming up in 2024
Thumbtack pins in calendar concept for busy, appointment and meeting reminder

Coming up in 2024

This page shows a calendar reflecting the latest expected dates for Commission reports, publications and events. You can also sign up to receive our quarterly newsletter by entering your email address in the box at the foot of each website page.

1 Feb 2024 By
Commission to explore capability of local electricity grid to support renewables push
electricity substation

Commission to explore capability of local electricity grid to support renewables push

Ensuring that the network connecting homes and businesses to the electricity supply can cope with the demands of a fully electric-powered economy will be the focus of a new piece of work by the National Infrastructure Commission. The government has today (27 February) published the terms of reference for the study, which asks the Commission...

27 Feb 2024 By
We’re recruiting – Senior Policy Adviser (environment)
Floodplain near Wollaston

We’re recruiting – Senior Policy Adviser (environment)

We’re looking to recuit someone with a particular interest in water management to join our environment team and help develop policies that enables our infrastructure systems to better protect and enhance our natural environment and safeguard important natural resources in the face of climate change impacts. Based in our Leeds office, the successful candidate will...

23 Feb 2024 By
Letter to government on business models for net zero technologies

Letter to government on business models for net zero technologies

Commission Chair Sir John Armitt has written to government setting out the need to accelerate efforts to encourage private investment in the energy infrastructure pivotal to achieving net zero and energy security. In a letter to the Chancellor and the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, Sir John highlights the importance of...

23 Feb 2024 By

Evidence_Icon_Turquoise Created with Sketch.

Explore data used in the Commission's research, and gain insights from across UK infrastructure

Join our team of professionals supporting the Commission to provide evidence based and forward thinking advice on infrastructure strategy.