On time, on budget

Latest station opens as ScotRail promises more trains

Robroyston is built on the site of an earlier station

Commuters in a Glasgow suburb have been connected to the rail network for the first time since 1956 as ScotRail introduces more and improved services across the country.

Robroyston becomes the 60th railway station in the Glasgow area with the first Glasgow to Edinburgh bound train calling at the station this morning.

It is built on land that was previously home to a Robroyston station and a marshalling yard. Services will be operated by ScotRail’s new class 385 electric trains.

Michael Matheson, the Scottish Transport Secretary, will officially open the station in the north of the city on Monday and will say that it has taken “little over a year to complete, on time and within budget. Not only has it secured significant savings to the public purse, it has also given us key learning for future rail projects.”

Its opening, as part of a £475m investment programme across Scotland, coincides with the launch of a new timetable promising 10,000 extra seats every day.

Improvements include more carriages for every peak service train between Edinburgh and Glasgow via Falkirk High.

There will be extra carriages for two of the morning services on the Borders Railway, between Tweedbank and South Gyle, and up to three trains an hour between Inverurie, Dyce and Aberdeen.

Highland setback

However, planned upgrades for the Highland Main Line (HML), due to be introduced in March this year, have been delayed and are not due now until May 2020 as new high-speed trains for the route are not ready.

Inverness Chamber of Commerce chief executive Stewart Nicol said: “ScotRail is making grand announcements about improvements to every part of the network, yet there is no mention of Inverness or the Highland Main Line, never mind anything further north or west, in the new timetable.

“We were expecting marginal journey time reductions of around ten minutes and service frequency enhancements but even these are not being delivered.”

Dispute resolved

Trade union, the TSSA, claimed victory in its long running dispute with ScotRail over the role of driver train managers.

DTMs have been working to rule since August after ScotRail tried to force them to cover up to three drivers’ shifts a week in addition to their normal job roles without previous consultation with the TSSA.

The union said the deal between ScotRail and the trade union is “good news for ScotRail’s passengers who’ve endured cancelled trains due to the dispute every weekend since September, most notably in the Edinburgh area”.

Last week more than 50 trains were cancelled across Glasgow, Perth, Aberdeen and Dundee.

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, said, “I’m glad that ScotRail has finally come to its senses and made us an offer that is acceptable for our members.”

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