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Work will soon commence on the construction of two new railway stations in the West Midlands.
The final piece of funding was approved in the budget earlier this month and means that the construction of the stations at Darlaston and Willenhall can now go ahead.
The £55m project to build the two station in the Black Country will begin with preparation works this spring, with full construction starting in the Autumn
Planning applications were submitted last year and the stations are due to open in 2023 and will mean the people of Darlaston and Willenhall have new options for travel to Wolverhampton, Walsall and Birmingham New Street.
Freight services currently run along the line and it will be the first time that passengers will be able to use the rail network after plans were unveiled in 2019.
Darlaston Station is to be built on derelict land next to the bridge on Kendricks road. Willenhall Station will be built next to the Bilston Street railway bridge.
Two trains per hour are expected to call at the new stations, one running between Walsall and Wolverhampton, the other between Birmingham New Street and Wolverhampton.
Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street said: “The people of Darlaston and Willenhall have waited a long time for these stations, and soon they will see diggers on site as we get to work.”
“Not only will the stations hugely improve transport links for the area, but they will also help to create local jobs at this difficult economic time. We will create construction jobs through the building of the stations, whilst we also expect the stations to encourage investment that could create a significant number of jobs by unlocking land for housing, commercial, and industrial development.
“From re-opening railway lines and stations and expanding the midland metro, to improving cycling infrastructure and cleaning up our buses, we’re investing billions in public transport across the Black Country and wider West Midlands to make up for decades of decline.”
Deputy leader of Walsall Council, Cllr Adrian Andrew, said: “This is massive step forward for the borough and the new stations will open up huge new opportunities for people to visit Willenhall and Darlaston as well as attract investment and new jobs to the area.”
“It will also offer the people of Darlaston and Willenhall more convenient routes in Walsall town centre at a time when we are putting huge investment in to make it a more attractive place to work and spend time.”
City of Wolverhampton Council leader, Cllr Ian Brookfield, said: “There are billions of pounds of investment on site or in the pipeline across the City of Wolverhampton, and improving our transport connections with all parts of the region and beyond will play a big part in how we make the most of that investment to boost our economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.”
“It is great news that works will soon start on the new stations at Willenhall and Darlaston and fits in well with our city’s significant commercial and residential regeneration schemes neighbouring this rail line. It will also provide better connections for people into our award-winning city centre Interchange.
“The new stations will provide further job opportunities for our residents and developments like this are also critical to encouraging more future use of public transport to help support our climate emergency agenda.”
This article first appeared on www.railadvent.co.uk
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