This report complements and builds upon the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Transport Congestion Challenge paper (Nov 2015), using the expertise of our Railway Division membership active throughout the UK rail industry.
The UK has one of the safest railways in the world, but it operates on some of the oldest infrastructure which has lacked investment and which constrains capacity. If we are to offer businesses and passengers an attractive alternative to road, we need to invest in our rail infrastructure.
This report demonstrates that we do need investment in new projects such as High Speed 2, and we need to go further than this. We need to enhance our existing network to make it more efficient, resolving known bottlenecks and pulling through innovation as soon as it has been proven.
Currently this takes far too long. Innovations in road transport mean that it can potentially become more comfortable, timely, cost-effective and reliable. Within this report, we draw on four case studies that show how rail can also achieve these objectives. Our Head of Transport and Manufacturing, Philippa Oldham, has also blogged on the challenges facing the UK's railways.