Merseyrail trains project moves forward as work starts on new depot

28 September 2017 16:21 - BAM Nuttall Ltd
Merseyrail trains project moves forward as work starts on new depot

28 September 2017 - Ground work has started on the new state-of-the-art depot at Kirkdale where all maintenance work for the new Merseyrail trains, due to be introduced in 2020, will take place.

Warrington-based BAM Nuttall is currently undertaking enabling works after being awarded the contract by Stadler Rail Services, who will be manufacturing and maintaining the new fleet.

Preliminary work is due to start in October, with the depot build set to be complete by 2019, in time for the arrival of new trains for testing.

Features of the new depot will include:

  • The creation of a maintenance facility for the new state-of-the-art Stadler trains.
  • A driving cab simulator, including a full-size mock-up of a driver's cab, facilities for a link between the trainer and trainee and a lecture theatre for people to observe the training
  • A new train washing facility.
  • Stabling capacity for up to 30 trains.
  • New offices and welfare facilities for the maintenance workforce

Meanwhile, the existing Birkenhead depot will remain essential to operations, with plans for a second new train washing facility. Detailed plans are still being developed for this site.

Thomas Zweifel, programme director & deputy CEO UK for Stadler, said: ‘Stadler will implement in the Kirkdale depot its state-of-the-art technology and maintenance expertise. The significant local investment and up-skilling of local workforce are strengthening the Merseyside industrial sector and will overall result in a positive economic impact. Stadler is excited to be involved in this project that will see new trains on the Merseyrail network in 2020.’

David Powell, Merseytravel’s programme director for the new trains, said: ‘The new depot at Kirkdale and the refurbished depot at Birkenhead North will be essential in keeping our new trains reliable, clean and serving the Liverpool City Region well. The start of the ground works at Kirkdale is an exciting milestone – the first real visible sign that these new state-of-the-art trains are coming.’

Jan Chaudhry-van der Velde, Merseyrail’s managing director, added: ‘The start of the work to overhaul Kirkdale depot is another step along the way to transform the Merseyrail network, moving us a stage closer to the introduction of new trains. We welcome this much needed upgrade, which will take the depot into the 21st century, equipped to maintain the trains to a very high standard.’

Added Paul Abraham, project manager for BAM Nuttall: ‘We have been working collaboratively with Stadler during the tender stage of this exciting programme. From our Warrington office we have been able to provide locally based staff to support the bid and develop the programme. We will continue with this locally based approach throughout the delivery phase and also provide opportunity for our northern based supply chain. We look forward to delivering this key piece of infrastructure for Stadler and Merseytravel and supporting the local economy.’

For more information about the new trains visit www.merseytravel.gov.uk/newtrains.