A new East West Rail Link to Bedford and Oxford, Aylesbury and Milton Keynes is planned to open in December 2017. It will allow people to travel from Reading to Heathrow airport without travelling to London.
The Bedford to Oxford link is not a totally new development, but the re-instatement of a previously closed line and is expected to encourage significant business investment in the area.
Currently, trains between Reading and London account for six out of the ten most overcrowded rail journeys in Britain, so it will be a great relief to holiday makers and business people alike when the congestion is eased at Reading.
Heathrow airport is at the centre of a range of business that will also benefit from the new rail link.
Stockley Park is one of Europe’s premier business parks housing some of the top names in industry such as BP, Canon and GlaxoSmithKline. Visiting business delegates who currently have to go into London to connect to outbound services should find the new route much easier.
Heathrow airport supports a range of hotels and centres for business and leisure consumers alike. People going on holiday with early flights quite often stay overnight in a nearby hotel such as the Park Inn on Bath Road before continuing with their onward journey. It is also a great location for business conferences as international delegates can conveniently and easily get to their destination.
Business in the catchment area will benefit from more cost effective freight routes, allowing them to become more efficient and drive industry growth in the area.
At present, it can be quite difficult to get between towns such as Bedford, Milton Keynes and Aylesbury by train. The new rail link will cut journey times in half, making it much more desirable to use the train and reduce car journeys, thereby decreasing congestion on the roads, CO2 emissions etc. It will also increase the catchment area of the towns considerably, driving the economy.