Oxford MailCOMMENT: On the right track at last (From Oxford Mail)

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COMMENT: On the right track at last

Oxford Mail: . .

THERE’S no denying that Network Rail’s £1bn electrification project is absolutely necessary. But what has angered many affected by the scheme is how officials have gone about it.

Earlier this year the firm scrapped its original timetable for rebuilding 28 bridges across the county.

Now it has admitted more work than first thought is needed on the Fulscot Road Bridge in South Moreton – the first of the bridges in the project – and residents will have to put up with the disruption for a further six months.

Wantage and Didcot MP Ed Vaizey, who has previously labelled the company “incompetent and insensitive”, today said he is “heartened” to hear that Network Rail will be working much harder with their contractors and the county council to minimise any further disruption.

Hats off to the firm for admitting it has faced considerable challenges on the project, but with a scheme on such a scale as this, every effort possible should have been made to ensure the disruption was kept to a minimum from day one.

We hope with Mr Vaizey involved, and the pressure from the communities affected, those at the top will make sure the rest of the project runs to plan. And above all, we hope they communicate with the public who will ultimately face the severe consequences of the work.

Comments (4)

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9:18am Wed 23 Apr 14

train passenger says...

If they had done this work in the 1970s like everywhere else in Europe, this would have gone more smoothly because the systems for complaining about infrastructure improvements were far less advanced at the time. Now we are not only 40 years behind the times but also need to pay more for 'mitigation measures'.
If they had done this work in the 1970s like everywhere else in Europe, this would have gone more smoothly because the systems for complaining about infrastructure improvements were far less advanced at the time. Now we are not only 40 years behind the times but also need to pay more for 'mitigation measures'. train passenger
  • Score: 1

12:58pm Wed 23 Apr 14

King Joke says...

1970s?!? France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland and even the USA had electrified main lines in the 1930s! All we managed were the relatively short lines to Brighton and Portsmouth. You are right though.
1970s?!? France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland and even the USA had electrified main lines in the 1930s! All we managed were the relatively short lines to Brighton and Portsmouth. You are right though. King Joke
  • Score: 1

1:20pm Wed 23 Apr 14

yabbadabbadoo256 says...

train passenger wrote:
If they had done this work in the 1970s like everywhere else in Europe, this would have gone more smoothly because the systems for complaining about infrastructure improvements were far less advanced at the time. Now we are not only 40 years behind the times but also need to pay more for 'mitigation measures'.
HS2 and HS1 would have been built a lot faster as well along with a lot more fast rail infrastructure
[quote][p][bold]train passenger[/bold] wrote: If they had done this work in the 1970s like everywhere else in Europe, this would have gone more smoothly because the systems for complaining about infrastructure improvements were far less advanced at the time. Now we are not only 40 years behind the times but also need to pay more for 'mitigation measures'.[/p][/quote]HS2 and HS1 would have been built a lot faster as well along with a lot more fast rail infrastructure yabbadabbadoo256
  • Score: 0

2:03pm Wed 23 Apr 14

Gunslinger says...

train passenger wrote:
If they had done this work in the 1970s like everywhere else in Europe, this would have gone more smoothly because the systems for complaining about infrastructure improvements were far less advanced at the time. Now we are not only 40 years behind the times but also need to pay more for 'mitigation measures'.
So what you are saying is that it is acceptable for roads to be cut off for 6 months to a year at a time, it's just the timing is all wrong?

The possibility of electrification of the GW main line route has been around since at least that time. Network Rail (and its predecessors) as network operators should have been fully aware of the nature and condition of the various structures along the route, and ready with a proper plan once it was likely to get the go ahead.

Instead they are making it up as they go along, with less than 2 years to finish the job. 'Incompetent and insensitive' about sums it up.
[quote][p][bold]train passenger[/bold] wrote: If they had done this work in the 1970s like everywhere else in Europe, this would have gone more smoothly because the systems for complaining about infrastructure improvements were far less advanced at the time. Now we are not only 40 years behind the times but also need to pay more for 'mitigation measures'.[/p][/quote]So what you are saying is that it is acceptable for roads to be cut off for 6 months to a year at a time, it's just the timing is all wrong? The possibility of electrification of the GW main line route has been around since at least that time. Network Rail (and its predecessors) as network operators should have been fully aware of the nature and condition of the various structures along the route, and ready with a proper plan once it was likely to get the go ahead. Instead they are making it up as they go along, with less than 2 years to finish the job. 'Incompetent and insensitive' about sums it up. Gunslinger
  • Score: 0

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