We attended Metrorail 2015 and found some encouraging developments to watch out for. Our top 7 highlights were:
1) Thameslink will start operating 4 trains per hour from central London to Luton Airport Parkway from December 2015, offering passengers an rail service which meets their flight schedule.
2) Gatwick Express’ 108 new carriages will be entering service in 2016, to be joined by the 1,140 new Thameslink carriages by 2018. If confirmed, they will all call at the airports new £140m hub station.
4) Toronto’s Union Pearson Express will start operations this spring offering passengers 4 trains per hour from downtown to the airport. Journey times are expected to be 25 minutes, with on board Wi-Fi. Excitingly, passengers will be able to print their boarding pass and luggage tags at Union Station before their journey. Metrolinx hopes that it will feel like an “extension of the air travel experience“.
5) National Rail (ATOC) developing their Darwin system, including GPS location of trains so that continual realtime updates can be projected on board, this is currently being trialled on First Hull Trains.
6) The future of information provision is bright and bold, with large screens now being developed and located around cities to display realtime service information in a format that passengers expect.
7) Birmingham New Street’s £600 million redevelopment is scheduled to open on time in September 2015, providing new concourse level facilities for the 175,000 daily users of the station.
Author: Liam Henderson