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Borders Railway

Key Facts

  • Client: Network Rail
  • Value: £220 million
  • Location: Scotland

The Borders Railway project involved re-establishing a 50km passenger rail link for the first time in over 40 years from Edinburgh to Tweedbank. The scheme was delivered by Network Rail in partnership with Transport Scotland, with BAM as lead designer and construction contractor.

  • The Borders Railway will bring an estimated £33m boost to the Scottish economy and provides new transport links to maximise opportunities for employment, business, tourism and leisure.
  • The railway will improve safety around the congested local road network and provides improved cycle routes.
  • The project consists of 50km of new railway, 7 new stations and 160 structures, earthworks, 11 major road schemes, all signalling, telecoms and electrical & power assets

The Borders Railway project involved re-establishing a 50km passenger rail link for the first time in over 40 years from Edinburgh to Tweedbank. The scheme was delivered by Network Rail in partnership with Transport Scotland, with BAM as lead designer and construction contractor.

The scope included major earthworks, new bridge installations, bridge refurbishments,

slope stabilisation works, river works, supporting infrastructure, roads and extensive utility diversions. The construction of the embankments and cuttings included the excavation of 804,000 tonnes of earthworks, the installation of 22,800m³ of gabion baskets and 25.6km of drainage works over the length of the route.

BAM worked on over 160 structures, including major new builds, road, rail and footbridges, such as the Hardengreen roundabout south of the Edinburgh City Bypass. BAM also worked closely with SEPA to agree numerous licences and consents required for working alongside the many rivers and other sensitive habitats along the route. The work involved complex and numerous interfaces with the existing road network including the A720 and A7 trunk roads. BAM worked closely with the relevant agencies and Local Authorities to keep road users fully updated as the works progress.

Community engagement has played an integral role in the project’s success. Through our dedicated community engagement team, BAM actively communicated with some 26,000 line side neighbours through community forums, drop in centres, school visits and proactive social media campaigns. To date BAM has responded to 1,500 specific enquiries and reached over 140,000 visitors via the project website. Local employment and engaging a local supply chain has ensured communities benefit from the project, with 234 locally resident supply chain personnel working on site.

Added value and innovation

The project team saved over £1m through the realignment of the new railway line and the A7 at Fallahill, enhancing the long-term sustainability of the project, reducing environmental impact and avoiding high risk engineering works. Local residents now have better access to their homes and will not be disturbed by traffic noise and light at night. Road users experience is enhanced because traffic flows unhindered.

Awards

Borders achieved a CEEQUAL ‘Excellent’ rating (87%). The prestigious award recognises outstanding performance for sustainable civil engineering and infrastructure projects across the UK.

Saltire Society Project Commendation Award 2015

“The project demonstrated an exceptional commitment to collaboration, coordination and communication with its stakeholders to deliver the longest new domestic railway in Britain for more than a century. The social, economic and environmental benefits the completed project will bring to the area it serves will be of great significance.”