Improved rail links between the Liverpool City Region, Cheshire and North Wales – with the possibility of direct services from Lime Street to places such as Llandudno – are a step closer with the approval of a new study.
Merseytravel’s Integrated Authority has agreed today (Thursday 16 January) to Merseytravel’s Executive initially funding research for the next stage of a rail project which will allow for the outline design and construction of the ‘Halton Curve’. This would bring back into full use the section of the line that links the Chester/Warrington line and the Liverpool/Crewe line at Frodsham Junction.
Though research into the economic benefits is still underway, it is expected that the full re-opening of the curve would improve links to Liverpool John Lennon Airport as well as opening up more leisure and work opportunities across the region.
This project is being developed by Merseytravel, Halton Borough Council, the Welsh Government and a consortium of the six county authorities in North Wales – one of several being taken forward to improve connectivity.
Merseytravel will be seeking contributions to the latest complex phase in the research which is expected to cost around £500,000.
Said Cllr Liam Robinson, Chair of Merseytravel’s Integrated Transport Authority:
“The Halton Curve may only be one and a half miles long but could be the key to unlocking so many more opportunities for people in our city region, North Wales and Cheshire.
“It wouldn’t be a project in isolation but part of the overarching vision for connectivity with the Liverpool City Region and the wider North West linking with plans for HS2 and developments of the lines to Manchester.”