Marsh Barton Station just months from opening

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Marsh Barton Station (courtesy Devon County Council)

Work continues “at pace”

Devon’s brand new rail station at Marsh Barton Exeter is taking shape as work continues ‘at pace’ – to use the buzzword.

Located near the waste-to-energy plant, it should open this winter.

Since the site’s new pedestrian and cycle bridge was put in place in February, two access ramps have been installed on each side, with the final sections to be added shortly. The bridge, which will provide a traffic-free route for pedestrians and cyclists along Clapperbrook Lane, is expected to open in the fall.

Both platforms have been fitted with curb slabs, candelabra and fencing as well as emergency access ramps on each side.

Local leaders hailed the benefits it would bring to the wider area as well as Exeter’s larger shopping area.

Councilor Andrea Davis, County Council Cabinet Member for Climate Change, Environment and Transport, said: “The development of Marsh Barton Station is hugely important infrastructure that supports our Devon Metro ambitions. This investment in our rail network will help Devon’s economy recover and grow in the future, while supporting our carbon reduction targets. It’s great to see such great progress on the platforms and the project remains on track to open this winter.

Councilor Duncan Wood, Exeter City Council’s senior climate change adviser, said: ‘The new station and its improved transport links will make Marsh Barton and West Exe much more accessible to those traveling by train, bicycle and on foot. With the added benefit of a new cycle and walkway, commuters, visitors and shoppers will be able to make the short journey without having to rely on the car and that must be good for everyone – reducing traffic jams, reduce our carbon emissions and improve people’s health and well-being.”

When completed, Marsh Barton station is expected to be served by hourly Great Western Railway services between Paignton and Exmouth, with additional services at peak times. The new station will open the south end of Exeter to business and leisure users.

Matt Barnes, Strategic Services Development Manager at GWR, said: “We are delighted to see the Marsh Barton station taking shape. Travel to Exeter has remained busy throughout the pandemic and has continued to grow. Customer numbers have also been higher than expected on the Dartmoor to Okehampton line since it reopened to passengers.

“There is a real demand for sustainable and reliable rail transport in Devon, and it is exciting to be able to make more improvements. We couldn’t do this without working with our local authorities, industry and business partners and Devon is truly leading the way in collaborative working. Marsh Barton is a very important next step for Devon Underground. It will support business and leisure travel and remove more cars from Devon’s roads.

The scheme is funded by the Department for Transport’s New Stations Fund, Devon County Council, Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership, Exeter City Council, Teignbridge District Council, Network Rail and GWR.

The progress at Marsh Barton is welcome news in an otherwise bleak summer on the railroads, which are being hit by strikes.

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