Faster trains to London if Peterborough crossings shut

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Several level crossings in Peterborough could shut to help make way for faster trains to London.

Several level crossings in Peterborough could shut to help make way for faster trains to London.

I’m impressed this far by the level of consultation, but the results when looking at traffic modelling will be critical.

Peter Hiller

Proposals by Network Rail are expected to be sent to the Department for Transport (DFT) in the autumn should funding be secured.

Traffic congestion fears are already being raised over the plans which are still in their infancy.

The planned closures are in: Woodcroft Road (to the southeast of Helpston), Glinton Road, Helpston, Maxey Road, Helpston, and Lolham Bridges and Helpston Footpath.

The level crossing at Tallington, which is outside the remit of Peterborough City Council, would also close.

Alternative access arrangements such as bridges and footpaths would be included for motorists and other travellers such as cyclists.

Network Rail is currently consulting on the plans which it says will also improve rail safety and limit delays.

The crossings are on the East Coast Main Line between London and Doncaster.

City councillors met with Network Rail representatives at a public meeting on Tuesday, March 3 who said they would only look to introduce faster trains if the level crossings were closed.

Council planning officers said they were not against the closures at the moment but admitted they had concerns over increased traffic, in particular around Maxey Road and Lolham Bridges.

Councillor Peter Hiller said: “I’m impressed this far by the level of consultation, but the results when looking at traffic modelling will be critical.”

A Network Rail spokesman said: “Network Rail has now completed its second round of consultation.

“We are currently evaluating the enormous amount of the feedback we received and this will be used to formalise our preferred option for each crossing.

“Decisions on each crossing won’t be made for some time as environmental and traffic assessments will need to be carried out for each crossing prior to Network Rail securing funding.”

The council cannot vote on the closures but is a consultee.

Full details of the alternative arrangements can be found at: http://www.networkrail.co.uk/improvements/east-coast-main-line/ecml-level-crossings/