Published on : Friday, November 11, 2016
Kingsknowe level crossing in Edinburgh will be upgraded to a full barrier crossing by early 2017 as part of an investment in safety by Network Rail.The crossing has been the site of 37 verified reports of misuse or near misses in the last 11 years.
It is currently a single barrier crossing, however, based on vehicle and pedestrian usage, it has been identified as a priority for safety enhancements.
The upgrade work will involve the removal of the current barrier system and the installation of double barriers and object detection hardware. The equipment, which is linked to the signalling system, scans the crossing for unknown objects before closing the barriers and scanning once again after they are closed, significantly reducing the risk of a collision. The green-keeper entrance to Kingsknowe golf course will also move slightly further from the crossing.
Preparation for the crossing upgrade has already begun and the new barriers will be installed during the Christmas holidays before reopening early in the New Year.The installation work will require Kingsknowe Road to close at the level crossing during the installation. The closure has been scheduled from Sunday 18 December to Monday 2 January. A shuttle bus will operate 24hrs throughout the closure to connect pedestrians from one side of the crossing to the other.
David Dickson, Infrastructure Director for the ScotRail Alliance, said: “Kingsknowe crossing operates on a busy rail line in the middle of an Edinburgh suburb, so the current half barrier system presents a significant risk to rail traffic and road users.
“The new full barrier crossing system is a major upgrade, utilising laser technology to scan the crossing before allowing a train to pass. While barrier down times will be extended, we believe that it is a small price to pay for a lower risk crossing.
“Our work to upgrade this crossing has already begun, however, the new barriers and scanning equipment will be installed during a closure of the crossing timed to coincide with the Christmas holidays. While we expect that this will minimise the impact of the road closure, we have arranged a shuttle bus to operate through the fortnight to ferry pedestrians from one side of the crossing to the other.”
Local residents with questions about the works or about the new level crossing equipment can contact Network Rail’s helpline on: 08347 11 41 41. Emergency services and bus operators have been advised of the road closure.