A BID for major transport improvements worth hundred of millions of pounds could see projects including a new railway line for Oxford completed in the next four years.

The schemes include the reintroduction of passenger services on the Cowley Branch Line, a long-awaited revamp of Oxford Station and upgrades to the A34, A40, A44 and the city's ring road.

Oxford City Council leader Bob Price said: "Once people arrive here – by road, train, or bus – they need to be able to get to the city centre quickly.

"These measures will mean that all starts to come together."

Transport bosses hope some of the schemes – expected to cost hundreds of millions of pounds in total – could be in place within the next four years, including the branch line.

Backed by councils, Network Rail and train operators, this would see new services run on tracks currently used only by BMW for freight, creating a new passenger link between the city centre and eastern Oxford – where most employment is now based.

There would be stops at Oxford Station, Oxford Science Park, next to the Kassam Stadium, and Oxford Business Park, in Cowley.

Meanwhile, another priority is the redevelopment of Oxford Station. This would see the current station demolished and replaced with a new building with east, west and south entrances, increase the number of tracks from four to six and add a new bus interchange, twice as much bicycle parking, as well as shops, offices, a hotel and housing.

Both plans will be presented as top priorities to the National Infrastructure Commission, the body which advises the Government on where it should build new infrastructure.

The commission has supported proposals for the Oxford-Cambridge Expressway road and is now preparing another report on how to tackle long-running traffic problems within the ‘last mile’ of the cities connected by it.

It is part of efforts to improve transport links along the so-called 'brain belt' of Oxford, Milton Keynes and Cambridge for businesses and commuters, where several of the country's top high-tech businesses are based.

The commission is expected to present its findings in the autumn. Its support is seen as vital because its recommendations to the Government have so far all been taken forward.

Mr Price added: "We will be talking to the commission about this in the next two weeks and have already had quite a few discussions with them about it, in terms of the transport and housing we need for economic growth."

David Edwards, the city council’s outgoing executive director of housing and regeneration, said: "The key issues for the city are connections between strategic transport network – so that's roads and rail – and how those link into the city centre.

"The answer is going to be public transport and sustainable modes such as biking, walking and buses. In the future we may see trams, but we have to tackle this a step at a time and do what is realistic and plan over a long period.

"Central to that is how is this funded and whether it is likely to receive long-term support from government. It will not all be done in one hit but we need to ensure there is a commitment to make it happen.

"We are in discussions with the commission about how to bring the branch line forward. Everyone is now at the table on that project and everyone is clear the opportunity is compelling."

Mr Edwards said the city council was also in ongoing discussions with Network Rail and the commission about Oxford Station, adding: "It has been a long time coming."

A spokesman for Network Rail said: "We have met with Oxford City Council on a number of occasions to discuss the possibility of introducing passenger services to the Cowley Branch and are happy to work with them to support their development of this scheme once a funding source has been identified and have reflected the proposals in the industry long-term strategy for the rail corridor."

Mark Langman, Network Rial's western route boss, also told the Oxford Mail in December that Oxford Station was 'a priority'.

Meanwhile, upgrades to main routes in Oxford such as Botley Road, Banbury Road, Woodstock Road, Abingdon Road and Cowley Road are likely to involve creating uninterrupted bus lanes where possible, as well as a network of ‘orbital’ bus lanes on the city’s ring road.