Network Rail Passenger journeys have nearly doubled since the early 1990s. Parts of the network are so full they run at nearly 200% of planned capacity at peak and performance has stopped improving. As capacity is so limited, trains are crowded, reliability has stopped improving, and there are fewer choices about where trains go – including less space for freight.
But there will be 1 billion more passenger journeys by 2030, so we need to act now. Industry has already agreed a plan to address this through digital modernisation, but it extends into the 2060s and hasn’t been designed to prioritise capacity. The Digital Railway programme is building the case to bring forward its delivery in a faster and more focused way.