Great Western Electrification Progress

hwl

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There may not be much a construction industry left in UK soon due to virus issues, it will take a long time to rebuild our ability to carry out major construction work from that that low point.
 
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Meerkat

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There may not be much a construction industry left in UK soon due to virus issues, it will take a long time to rebuild our ability to carry out major construction work from that that low point.
Unless lots of working age people die, or somehow the equipment gets destroyed, I can’t see how you can come to that conclusion
 

Peter Sarf

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There may not be much a construction industry left in UK soon due to virus issues, it will take a long time to rebuild our ability to carry out major construction work from that that low point.

The bigger threat to electrification is due to the pause that came about before COVID-19. The teams that built up experience have been disbanded and so, when the next projects start, there will be a labour force but they will be un-trained.
 

hwl

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Unless lots of working age people die, or somehow the equipment gets destroyed, I can’t see how you can come to that conclusion
The construction industry (based on my discussions with key firms) is expecting will be very damaged with all existing projects picking up significant extra delays delay and major supply chain disruption e.g. firms /factory closing leading to huge amounts of extra work to complete things. This will knock new projects even further into the future.
 

hwl

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The bigger threat to electrification is due to the pause that came about before COVID-19. The teams that built up experience have been disbanded and so, when the next projects start, there will be a labour force but they will be un-trained.
The knowledge / specialist equipment hasn't entirely dispersed, but the crisis construction faces is likely to see that reduced even further.
 

The Ham

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The knowledge / specialist equipment hasn't entirely dispersed, but the crisis construction faces is likely to see that reduced even further.

Whilst I agree that there's a risk that it could disperse further there's also a chance that with the construction industry badly hit that it could be fairly easy (as long as it happens early on) that enough of a team is reformed to allow future electrification to happen.
 

Peter Sarf

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Whilst I agree that there's a risk that it could disperse further there's also a chance that with the construction industry badly hit that it could be fairly easy (as long as it happens early on) that enough of a team is reformed to allow future electrification to happen.

Actually I have been wondering for a while if railway construction projects might be cheaper if there was not so much construction going on elsewhere in the UK. I mean making resources scarce and so more expensive. I think there has been a lot of construction because loans are cheap maybe ?.
 

FGW_DID

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There wasn't enough expertise / qualified personnel from the UK to start with on the GWML Electrification, I cant speak for other areas but certainly the OLE team who wired up Reading TCD, were predominately Spaniards working with a UK COSS.
 

linuxlad7

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What about Furrer unt Frei (wherent they the OLE expert contractors ,... and any news from Noel Dolphyn??)
 

Domh245

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What about Furrer unt Frei (wherent they the OLE expert contractors ,... and any news from Noel Dolphyn??)

F+F design electrification components, as do several others including Bonomi & Siemens. Then there are the people who design the actual systems using said components (eg Atkins), and finally the people who are out on the ground physically installing it. The component design companies are all global and so won't loose any skills, the system designers are again relatively global - if there aren't any british railways in need of electrification designs, there'll be other railways that they can crack on with, or even use skills from other offices across the world for UK systems if necessary in the future. It's the installers where the loss of skills from no further schemes will be most felt.
 

Bald Rick

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F+F design electrification components, as do several others including Bonomi & Siemens. Then there are the people who design the actual systems using said components (eg Atkins), and finally the people who are out on the ground physically installing it. The component design companies are all global and so won't loose any skills, the system designers are again relatively global - if there aren't any british railways in need of electrification designs, there'll be other railways that they can crack on with, or even use skills from other offices across the world for UK systems if necessary in the future. It's the installers where the loss of skills from no further schemes will be most felt.

The installers are mult-national too. Much of the recent Scottish electrification was installed by Italians.
 

DidcotDickie

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The installers are mult-national too. Much of the recent Scottish electrification was installed by Italians.

Yep. On the Great Western electrification Amey partnered with Inabensa (Spanish) for the installation. They guys I saw putting up the wires from the HOPS train between Challow and Uffington a few years ago sounded Spanish.
 

Dai Corner

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Yep. On the Great Western electrification Amey partnered with Inabensa (Spanish) for the installation. They guys I saw putting up the wires from the HOPS train between Challow and Uffington a few years ago sounded Spanish.

Amey are/were due to be starting the Welsh Valley lines around now.
 

stj

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Things could go either way if we end up with mass unemployment there could be a massive expansion of railway and infrastructure projects to create jobs.
 

IanXC

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Lets be careful here. I'm not sure we're wishing for mass unemployment...
 

The Ham

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I am certainly not. To prevent that it needs some good infrastructure projects and electrification does that as well as helping the climate.

Indeed, I would go further and suggest that road based projects are likely to be cut as demand drops due to more people working from home.

Whilst this would also have an impact on rail, much of the losses from rail are likely to be offset by more occasional rail travel from those who no longer use road transport.
 

Richard Scott

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Looks like Severn Tunnel is closed this weekend, they working on the overheads with a view to bringing it into operation?
 

si404

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Indeed, I would go further and suggest that road based projects are likely to be cut as demand drops due to more people working from home.
Most road-based projects are about connecting to new residential developments. OK, you won't see as many big ticket motorway widenings to increase commuter capacity, but 'distributor roads' and 'relief roads' are about opening up areas to development, not actually increasing capacity.

And increased working from home is going to increase demand for less dense living (and thus more relief/distributor roads to serve new suburban/exurban development as urban densification would be less lucrative) - spending more time at home and less in the office, you'd favour space to work over speed to work.
 

Richard Scott

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Was asking the question as no trains through the tunnel this weekend so afraid I don't have any knowledge of the work going on, just happen to live nearby!
 

Dhassell

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Was asking the question as no trains through the tunnel this weekend so afraid I don't have any knowledge of the work going on, just happen to live nearby!
They where meant to be moving in the new bridge at Gipsy Patch Lane, but that was postponed. Network Rail on twitter have posted about replacing points south of Pilning towards the Severn Tunnel.
 

The Ham

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Most road-based projects are about connecting to new residential developments. OK, you won't see as many big ticket motorway widenings to increase commuter capacity, but 'distributor roads' and 'relief roads' are about opening up areas to development, not actually increasing capacity.

And increased working from home is going to increase demand for less dense living (and thus more relief/distributor roads to serve new suburban/exurban development as urban densification would be less lucrative) - spending more time at home and less in the office, you'd favour space to work over speed to work.

Most of the roads schemes we I've been involved in which they create the link roads you describe serve two purposes:

- bypass a busy junction
- provide access to the houses

With a reduction in traffic the first point would be less critical, so they may not be required.

However the funding of such schemes is primarily provided by the housebuilders who benefit from the roads involved. Without needing to find such roads the councils are likely to require the householders to build better cycle facilities and/or invest in public transport.
 

LNW-GW Joint

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Yep. On the Great Western electrification Amey partnered with Inabensa (Spanish) for the installation. They guys I saw putting up the wires from the HOPS train between Challow and Uffington a few years ago sounded Spanish.

Amey itself is Spanish-owned (by Ferrovial).
It is also reputed to be up for sale/disposal after steep UK losses (not in rail, apparently).

There is still no real sign that any new electrification projects are going to get the green light.
The main hope now is that it will figure in HMG plans to kick-start industry after Covid-19.
Even then there are few installation-ready schemes after the 5-year hiatus since the CP5 plug was pulled..
 

themiller

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Amey itself is Spanish-owned (by Ferrovial).
It is also reputed to be up for sale/disposal after steep UK losses (not in rail, apparently).

There is still no real sign that any new electrification projects are going to get the green light.
The main hope now is that it will figure in HMG plans to kick-start industry after Covid-19.
Even then there are few installation-ready schemes after the 5-year hiatus since the CP5 plug was pulled..
Surely, the parts of the GWR electrification to Temple Meads and to Oxford are ready to go as they were suddenly curtailed to get Cardiff wired.
 

59CosG95

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Surely, the parts of the GWR electrification to Temple Meads and to Oxford are ready to go as they were suddenly curtailed to get Cardiff wired.
Design-wise, perhaps. Whether NR has the resources (human, financial, administrative) to resume works remains to be seen.
 

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