Liverpool’s railways and stations are set to benefit from more than £340m-worth of upgrades over the next three years.
The investment, which will see longer platforms at Liverpool Lime Street station and track renewals on the Merseyrail network, will be partly paid for through the government’s Growth Deal Fund.
The £12bn fund was set up in 2014 to support local housebuilding and infrastructure projects across 39 city regions and local enterprise partnerships.
Liverpool City Region LEP secured a total of £232m of Growth Deal funding, £111m of which has been earmarked for the railway improvements. Network Rail has agreed to invest £229m.
Other upgrade work that will be carried out as a result of the investment includes additional track between Huton and Roby, the installation of new track between Liverpool and Chester and the building of a new station at Maghull North.
Network Rail is predicting a 100 per cent increase in rail passengers across the region by the 2040s. Route managing director Martin Frobisher said: “Our aim over the next three years is to give the people of Liverpool the high-quality rail services they deserve.
“With demand for rail travel expected to rise by 50 per cent over the coming years, these improvements are vital for the future growth and prosperity of this great city region.
“During this work Liverpool will remain open for business, welcoming visitors to the city as well as providing vital transport links for commuters.”
Merseytravel chairman Liam Robinson said: “It’s helping deliver the first stage of our 30-year long-term rail strategy, supporting economic growth by boosting connections and capacity within the city region and beyond.
“We see this as essential incremental improvement ahead of transformational schemes such as high-speed links north-south and east-west to ensure we fulfil our potential as a key player in the Northern Powerhouse.”