Rolling stock plan

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17. The new Crossrail services require the phased introduction of approximately 600 vehicles by 2017 to operate services across London, once the tunnelling works are complete.

18. Procurement will be led by Transport for London and Cross London Rail Links. It is likely that these vehicles will also meet the aspirations for the next generation of EMUs and may be similar, but probably not identical, to those proposed for the Thameslink Programme.

19. The expanded fleet for this project will displace some existing stock and whilst some of these (Class 315s for example) will be nearing the end of their planned lives, others, such as Class 165s and 360/2s would be available for use elsewhere on the network.

Next Generation Multiple Unit and Tram Train

20. DfT has already started discussions with the industry regarding the development of the designs for next generation multiple units. It is proposed that this family of trains meets the long term aspirations for both regional and urban diesel and electric trains, making best use of emerging technologies.

21. In addition, a project is also being developed to establish a trial for a tram train in the UK. If successful, this could lead to wider introduction on urban, rural and Community Rail routes.

22. Whilst both these two projects are currently led by DfT, there has been no decision yet on the role of DfT and it is not necessarily the case that DfT would take the lead on the procurement arrangements.

Procurement and Financing of Rolling Stock

23. Rolling Stock in the UK is privately owned and financed. It is appropriate that Government takes the initial lead on complex projects, setting a framework for them to be financed and delivered by the private sector. To facilitate delivery of these projects and to ensure value for money, it is sometimes appropriate for DfT to specify rolling stock in franchises. Whole life costs and value for money considerations will continue to lead the DfT to the most appropriate specification, financing and procurement solutions.

24. Almost all of the current passenger rolling stock is financed via operating leases. However, the risk and reward structure for IEP, and potentially Thameslink and Crossrail, may be different.

25. The DfT has concerns over operation of the passenger rolling stock leasing market. On the 28th June 2006, DfT made a submission to the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) to request that the ORR refer these markets to the Competition Commission for investigation under section 131 of the Enterprise Act 2002. After due consideration, the ORR made this reference to the Competition Commission on the 26th April 2007.

26. DfT is keen to ensure that the new vehicles for delivering the capacity metric in HLOS are procured in a manner that delivers best value for money and appropriate transfer of risk. Furthermore, DfT is keen to see private sector experience used in the procurement process and therefore expects that TOCs will lead in the procurement of the additional vehicles.

European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS)

27. The implementation of ERTMS requires synchronisation between the fitting of rolling stock and of infrastructure. The Network Rail led National ERTMS team has developed a detailed implementation programme based on assumptions of where rolling stock will be operating over the next twenty years. DfT will continue to work with Network Rail to ensure the alignment of infrastructure enhancement and rolling stock deployment.

Meeting Access Standards by 2020 (RVAR and PRM TSI)

28. The Rail Vehicle Accessibility Requirements (RVAR) and the Persons with Reduced Mobility Technical Standard for Interoperability (PRM TSI) set out clear requirements for access to rolling stock. Whilst new vehicles meet these requirements there are many older fleets of trains which do not.

29. Full compliance with the standards could be very expensive and for some fleets with only a short remaining life, it could be uneconomic to undertake the work.

30. In applying the RVAR and PRM TSI, the Government will adopt a pragmatic approach and will consider instances of minor non-compliance on a case-by-case basis. DfT believes that this pragmatic approach will be supported by disability stakeholders.

31. The rolling stock leasing companies (ROSCOS) and train operating companies (TOCs) have already started to develop and promote pragmatic proposals to make fleets substantially compliant. DFT welcomes these approaches and looks forward to proposals covering other fleets.

32. The proposals depend on the level of investment which the train owners and operators are prepared to put into individual fleets so therefore it is neither necessary nor appropriate for the DfT to publish lists of which vehicles it expects to be in service beyond 2020 and which vehicles it does not expect to be in service beyond 2020.

33. These arrangements should deliver early improvements in access to vehicles as well as allowing TOCs and ROSCOs to plan for the long term.

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