West Fife rail link proposed - but nobody knows where
0 - 0 • Published 18 Dec 2008 09:55 1 Comment
THE SCOTTISH Government has announced plans to build a railway line to the east of Dunfermline - just don"t ask them where.
A new Inverkeithing-to-Halbeath link was announced last week along with a new Forth bridge as one of 29 projects to take place over the next 20 years.
It would cost between £100 million and £250 million and was included in the Government"s transport plan to be implemented over the 'next decade'.
However, when asked for further information on exactly where the line would go, Transport Scotland took a couple of days to piece together their response.
They didn"t know either.
A spokeswoman said, 'The detail is still being worked out.'
If, as expected, the new rail link follows the M90 motorway, it could run near houses and businesses in Dunfermline"s eastern expansion (DEX), as well as Carnegie College, Lynebank Hospital and the mothballed Hyundai microchip factory on the western side.
On the eastern side of the M90 there are old and new mine workings at Prathouse and Muirdean, as well as acres of countryside.
Transport minister Stewart Stevenson announced in the parliament that the link was part of the Strategic Transport Projects Review (STPR), a multi-billion pound transport programme.
It was described as 'the biggest and most ambitious Scottish transport plan ever published and sets out the future investment programme for transport in Scotland over the next 20 years'.
He also said, 'The STPR is a robust, nationwide study of the transport improvements which should be made over the next decade and beyond, making a significant contribution to our central purpose of increasing sustainable economic growth for Scotland.'
Mr Stevenson said the direct dual-track would have new rail junctions at each location and link up with a new park and ride at Halbeath.
It was also hailed as good news for Fife as it would reduce journey times between Edinburgh, Perth, Aberdeen, Inverness and communities in the Kingdom.
The Press asked Transport Scotland a number of questions, including if it would adversely affect train services using the Dunfermline stations and Rosyth.
However, they merely repeated the same information that was given last week and, when pressed, said the 'details were still to be worked out'.
Tony Martin, the chair of Fife Council"s environment and transportation committee, said, 'I don"t think Transport Scotland know themselves where it"s going.
'It"s hard to get any detail about it as it"s not a Fife Council project.'
He added, 'It came as a surprise to me that it was included as a strategic aim and I imagine it would follow the line of the motorway.
'It"s not really to improve matters in Fife but I suppose if it improves journey times between Aberdeen, Inverness and Edinburgh that"s a good thing.'
Mr Martin said if the Inverkeithing-to-Halbeath rail link was built, it could also be used by light rail and link up with a proposed light railway system on the old Forth Road Bridge.
This article appeared in Dunfermline Press 18 Dec 08
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Dec 23, 19:01
perhaps the should look at improving the rail links they have. I travelled from Dunfermline to Edinburgh on the 22nd of december on the 11am train and it was like a cattle train. We were herded on to two coaches, as I had my two grandchildren with me, one in a buggy it meant that we had to stand in the corrider or I mean we were squashed in between several other cattle/passengers. My 2yr old grandaughter was screaming to get off, which made the journey for me and I am sure for the other people who had to endure her screams. Remember this was the start of the school holidays and christmas week how could they get it wrong again. It also happens during the festival, which I had to complain about, obviously they never learn by there mistakes. I would like to thank them for the journey back there were about nine carriages which shows the do have enough. Perhaps someday they will sort it out. mrs j bowie, 26 pentland terrace dunfermline
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