Economic Benefits

The entire East West Rail corridor is experiencing significant economic growth, and is set to continue as one of the fastest growing areas in the UK.

East West Rail is seen as critical to delivering and supporting this growth.

In 2015, Rail Expertise Ltd forecast the wider economic benefits of East West Rail Western Section as:

£135m increase to GDP in the South East per annum
£62m additional tax receipts per annum
£2.13bn+ national GVA impact over 30 years, of which
£978m local GVA impacts

The forecast economic benefits have increased from £31m per annum increase in GDP, with £17m additional tax receipts per annum, as forecast in 2010. Then, the Benefit to Cost Ratio (BCR) was 6.3 to 1, which is an exceptional BCR for a railway.

The case of East West Rail Western Section is further strengthened by the development work on the Central Section – to extend the line east of Bedford to Cambridge – which is showing that the Central Section has the potential to develop into a viable scheme with a positive BCR.

View or download the full report here.
East West Rail Western Section Wider Economic Benefits. Rail Expertise Ltd 2015

Previous forecasts may be viewed here.
Business Case – Archived

In August 2016, six Local Enterprise Partnerships and England’s Economic Heartland Strategic Alliance, submitted a report to the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) in response to their call for evidence for their study into the Cambridge – Milton Keynes – Oxford growth corridor.

See news story here
East West Rail Key to Economic Development

View or download the full response here
NIC Call for Evidence Response: Cambridge Milton Keynes Oxford Growth Corridor Aug 2016

In November 2016 the NIC gave its interim report, and recommended that:

  • Government should go ahead with East West Rail’s initial phase, a new link cutting journey times by more than half on the route from Oxford to Bedford and Milton Keynes, ensuring it is delivered before 2024; and it should invest in developing as soon as possible detailed plans for both the next phase of East West Rail (which would complete the link to Cambridge) and for a new Oxford-Cambridge Expressway.

You can the NIC’s report here: Cambridge-Milton-Keynes-Oxford-interim-report



Page last updated September 2016