Consultation into welsh rail testing centre opens

Residents living near the open cast mine and coal washery in Onllwyn and Nant Helen at the head of the Dulais Valley have a chance to air their views on plans to build an international test facility at the site.

The Welsh Government is working with Neath Port Talbot and Powys Councils to develop proposals for a Global Centre of Rail Excellence.

The first stage briefing and engagement exercise opens today (2 July) and closes on 7 October. It informs respondents that delivering the Global Centre of Rail Excellence would be achieved by combining three distinct components:

  • Electrified high speed outer rail loop (6.9km) for testing passenger trains up to a maximum speed of 110 mph; unique to Europe electrified low speed inner rail loop (4.5km) for testing infrastructure and equipment and a control building on land associated with the open cast mining operation.
  • Research and operations centre on land currently associated with the coal-washery for education, research and development, offices and conferencing, storage, maintenance and decommissioning of trains and carriages (rolling stock).
  • Low speed linear testing track (555m) with a mechanical pulley-driven system for infrastructure testing.

Source: Welsh Government

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