Greer Speaks for Milngavie Rail Redualling in Parliament
Green MSP and local resident Ross Greer has used a parliamentary debate to renew his calls for the second track to be reinstated on the Westerton to Milngavie rail line, following the release of performance data once again showing it to be the worst performing rail line in Scotland.
Greer was speaking in a debate brought by fellow Green MSP Mark Ruskell, encouraging communities to apply to the Local Rail Development Fund, a £2 million scheme secured by the Greens during budget negotiations. The fund helps communities and local councils develop plans to reopen lines and stations across Scotland.
During the debate, Greer raised the technical study he commissioned and presented to the Scottish Government, which concluded that only redualling would resolve the performance issues on this single-track terminating line, which runs at maximum capacity of four trains an hour.
He also highlighted that the Milngavie line is unique in seeing passenger numbers fall over recent months, despite growth in rail usage across Scotland. Greer pointed out that this poor performance, combined with cuts to local bus services such as the Citybus 15, are leading more residents to get back into their cars, which in turn contribute towards the chronic issues of air pollution on Drymen Road in Bearsden.
Speaking after the debate, Ross Greer said:
“We were led to expect that improvements to the Milngavie line would be felt from the start of this year but the latest performance stats are out and we’re still at just 28% of trains on time, the worst in Scotland.
“Extending platform one at Westerton, changing the timetable and improving the turnaround at Milngavie are all welcome changes but they haven’t translated into a better service. Redualling is the only option if we want a satisfactory local service and it’s essential if we’re to build the long-proposed Allander station. I’ve presented the evidence to ministers repeatedly now, it’s time they act.”