The Liverpool City Combined Authority has approved a range of projects aimed at improving travel across Merseyside, including reinstatement of the Halton Curve.
Also endorsed by the Welsh Government and by Cheshire West and Chester Council, bringing the line back into full use will entail an hourly direct service between Liverpool and Chester, and the extension of some services into Wales.
The intention is to include the services in a revised specification for the forthcoming Wales and Borders franchise beginning in 2018. Work will start in June 2017 and be completed by May 2018.
Merseytravel estimates that the new services would generate more than 200,000 new rail journeys between Liverpool and Chester per year, by offering an alternative route between the two cities to the Wirral Line.
Approval of the business case releases the £10.4 million allocated to the scheme through the Government’s Local Growth Fund (LGF). An additional £5.67m will come from the City Region’s own LGF pot of £232m.
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