The UK government today announced it has awarded the East Anglia franchise to Abellio East Anglia, who will oversee this £1.4 billion investment to local rail services. Abellio East Anglia will run the franchise from October 2016 until 2025.
The franchise includes rolling stock and Abellio has selected Bombardier to supply 660 British-built carriages for almost £1 billion. The contract is expected to be finalized within the next few weeks.
The new operator of the East Anglia franchise will invest heavily to improve services for passengers. This includes:
- replacing the entire fleet with new trains within 4 years of the start of the franchise
- increasing operational performance levels from 89.2% to 92.9%
- Public Performance Measure 32,000 more seats on services arriving at London Liverpool Street in the morning peak 1,144 additional weekday services Norwich in 90 and Ipswich in 60 service
- £9,795,000 of stations enhancements
- smart ticketing on the entire network by 2019
- controlled emission toilets by 1 January 2020
- free Wi-Fi at stations and on trains
Richard Hunter, UK Managing Director at Bombardier Transportation said, “Being named preferred bidder for this significant order is a fantastic endorsement of our workforce and the quality of the products we design, engineer and manufacture here in the UK and will ensure a stable, long-term workload for our staff here in Derby. Our modern AVENTRA trains will provide passengers with greater connectivity, reliability and shorter journey times.”