Atkins to advise DfT on InterCity West Coast franchise

Posted: 18 April 2011 | | No comments yet

Atkins has been appointed technical adviser to the DfT for the InterCity West Coast franchise replacement programme…

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Atkins has been appointed technical adviser to the Department for Transport (DfT) for the InterCity West Coast franchise replacement programme.

The existing franchise, operated by Virgin Trains, will expire in March 2012 with the Department now inviting bids from potential operators to operate a new franchise for up to 15 years. It currently operates over 300 train services per day, delivering over 26 million passenger journeys and 3.2 billion passenger miles per year.

Atkins’ Project Director, Michael Hayes explains more, ‘Atkins’ role as technical advisor will be to assist the Department in seeking out the best operator who will find the full potential of the route while focusing on quality for passengers and best value-for-money for taxpayers.

‘The Department will have access to a wide range of our services, including revenue and cost modelling, operations, rolling stock and asset management, and will benefit from our in-depth knowledge of the West Coast route.

‘Our technical understanding, past experiences and desire to continue improving our rail industry will ensure the Department is fully aware of all the elements and growth opportunities so the right operator is chosen.’

The winning bidder will be announced in late 2011. A smooth transition will also ensure the franchise is ready and running in time for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, providing important transport facilities during the period while carrying large numbers of passengers to and from capital.

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