Network Rail is looking for a private sector partner to deliver a digital railway transformation project worth up to £45M as part of the £1.8bn upgrade to the East Coast Main Line (ECML).
The partner, who will have the title of Railway Systems Integration Partner (RSIP), will be appointed via a framework contract that will last for more than eight years. The project is part of Network Rail’s wider £1.8bn scheme to deliver a digital train control system on the East Coast Main Line (ECML) route.
Having been last substantially upgraded in the 1970s, the train control system will need to be renewed, according to Network Rail.
The successful bidder will work within Network Rail’s North Eastern and East Midlands (LNE & EM) route to lead the development and deployment of the European Train Control System for in-cab signalling between King’s Cross and just south of Grantham.
The RSIP will be one of three partners assisting the transformations on the programme and will manage integration activities and establish a collaborative relationship with the route, its technology partners and stakeholders including government, passengers, freight operators and train owners.
Many of the trains operating on the route have already been fitted with digital in-cab signalling technology or are soon to come into service, Network Rail has added.
LNE & EM route director Rob Mcintosh said: “The RSIP will assist us to maximise the potential benefits of the digital signalling and train control systems by leading the industry through the change process and ensuring collective operational readiness on this complex transformation programme.”
Network Rail digital railway managing director David Waboso added: “Britain’s railway is in need of a transformative approach that takes it beyond the challenges of today, and this will create a mould for how a new generation of partnerships can be established that will deliver better outcomes, both for users and for how the industry works together.”
Speaking earlier this year about the wider £1.8bn project, Network Rail route programme director LNE & EM Toufic Machnouk said that starting in the South was “the best business case” for the project and would “benefit the North”.
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