Work on Belfast Railway Line

Wednesday 09 December 2020

Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has announced that essential engineering works on the railway line in Belfast will commence later this month. 

The main construction works which will be completed over the Christmas and New Year period will see an upgrade and refurbishment of the line around Lagan Junction, located between Lanyon Place and Yorkgate station in Belfast as part of a project called the Central Area Track Renewal. 

This will require an 8-day closure of the lines between Belfast-Bangor and Yorkgate-Lanyon Place from Sunday 27th December 2020 to Sunday 3rd January 2021 (inclusive).  The network will remain open, however, bus substitution services will be in place during the closure.

During this time, essential maintenance work on the platform wall at Carnalea train station will also be completed along with some preliminary works for the new Belfast Transport Hub. 

Minister Mallon said: “I believe that our public transport network is vital in our recovery from COVID-19 both economically and socially. In particular, we still have a climate emergency to address and we cannot do this without a functioning and thriving public transport network.  

“I have been clear that I am committed to increasing the use of public transport and encouraging more people to consider active travel options.  To do that successfully we need to continue to invest in our infrastructure and our rail infrastructure in particular.

“The Central Area track is one of the busiest sections on the railway network and has significant importance as the gateway to Belfast from the Derry, Larne and Bangor lines.  The upgrade on this section of the line will not only bring long term benefits for passengers, it will also ensure we can continue to open up opportunities for connectivity and economic growth.”

Translink’s Director of Infrastructure and Projects John Glass said: “It is vital we take these steps to invest and modernise our network.   As we work to build back greener and more responsibly, we aim to offer attractive rail travel for future generations and supporting the climate emergency.

“We have carefully considered the best timing to deliver this important project in order to minimise the overall impact for passengers and local residents. Using the Christmas and New Year holiday period, coupled with the impact of Covid-19, means there are less passengers travelling and the closure allows us to complete the works in an efficient and effective way”.

“We have also carried out a range of community engagement to ensure stakeholders and the local community around these areas have also been kept up to date on our plans.” he concluded.

Passengers are advised, during these works, the train lines between Bangor and Belfast and Yorkgate and Belfast will be closed, with a temporary timetable and bus substitutions in operation. Great Victoria Street (GVS) Station will also be closed with a bus service running between GVS, Lanyon Place and Yorkgate Stations.

Passengers are advised to check their connections in advance, as bus substitutions will operate at different times to scheduled trains.

Bangor line passengers with valid rail tickets will also be able to travel on scheduled Ulsterbus services operating between Belfast and Bangor during the closure period.

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