Hitachi Rail Europe Ltd and VolkerFitzpatrick have celebrated the completion of the external building envelope at Hitachi's Stoke Gifford Train Maintenance Centre, which is currently under construction in South Gloucestershire, near Bristol.
The brand-new facility will support and maintain the Class 800/801 trains Hitachi is delivering through Agility Trains for the Department for Transport’s £5.7bn Intercity Express Programme (IEP). These trains will be running on the Great Western Main Line from 2017.
This celebration represents a significant milestone in the £80 million development of the site, which started in August 2013 and is scheduled to be completed by the end of the year. Now that the external building envelope is complete, moving forwards all work will focus on the interior fit –out of the facility.
The ceremony was hosted by Andy Barr, Chief Operating Officer (COO) at Hitachi Rail Europe and Paul Lilley, Contracts Manager, VolkerFitzpatrick, with representatives of the Department for Transport and local government in attendance.
During the event, guests were given a breakdown of the work currently underway at the site and were invited to observe the progress that had so far been made in the construction process.
Rail Minister Claire Perry said: “We are investing record amounts building a world-class railway as part of our long term economic plan. Hitachi’s new InterCity Express trains will provide more seats, more services and better journeys for passengers, transforming train travel for thousands along the Great Western Main Line.
“I congratulate Hitachi for making the investment, which will ensure that these new trains are maintained to the highest standard. Along with the decision to build the trains in the UK, this is great news for our economy.”
Andy Barr, COO of Hitachi Rail Europe, said: “Today’s event marks a key development in the build progress at our Stoke Gifford Train Maintenance Facility. Tasked with housing and maintaining the Class 800/801 Great Western Main Line fleet, it will play a crucial role in ensuring our rolling stock delivers the optimum level of service to passengers on the route. I can’t emphasise enough how much we value the hard work of VolkerFitzpatrick and the local supply chain in delivering this ground-breaking facility.”
Once completed, the state-of-the-art depot will comprise a maintenance building, office and staff accommodation space, stabling and servicing roads, and a carriage wash machine.
Paul Lilley, Contracts Manager for VolkerFitzpatrick said: “We are very proud to have been awarded the contracts to build three rail depots for Hitachi Rail Europe. By working in collaboration with Hitachi Rail Europe, stakeholders and our supply chain we can demonstrate the one team approach that is critical in the successful delivery of these rail depot projects.
“VolkerFitzpatrick made a commitment to engage with the community during the construction phase to help Hitachi build on a legacy for the coming 27 years. We are continuously engaging with local schools and colleges, providing work experience, apprenticeships and site visit opportunities. VolkerFitzpatrick also received the status as a National Skills Academy for Construction, delivered by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) and the Stoke Gifford project is praised as best practice in the construction industry by receiving one of the highest Considerate Constructors Scheme scores in the UK.
“We look forward to spreading our success and close collaboration to ensure there is a lasting legacy of support when the construction works are completed.”