Ipswich: Two new platforms could be built at Ipswich Station

IPSWICH: The town’s railway station could be expanded with the construction of two new platforms for trains heading west and north, The Evening Star can reveal today.

The news comes on the day that the station’s new footbridge came into operation – a �2.4million construction which could be extended in future if needed.

The new “island” platform would be built on land currently occupied by rail container company Freightliner as a refuelling depot.

Once the new “Ipswich Chord” is built linking the East Suffolk Line heading to Felixstowe and the main line to Stowmarket, Ely, and Peterborough, there will be no need for much of the marshalling yard to the north of the station and it would be sensible for Freightliner to develop a refuelling depot there.

That could allow Network Rail to build the new island, platforms five and six, which could be used by trains heading west to Cambridge and Peterborough.

Ipswich councillor with responsibility for transport Phil Smart said the extra platforms would increase the flexibility on the existing platforms at the station.

He said: “How often have people had to sit in a stationary train at the southern end of the tunnel while a platform clears?

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“If platform four, which is a through line, was available, then that should not happen anywhere near as often and it would make rail operations at Ipswich far more flexible.”

Network Rail spokesman Russell Spink said the possibility of extending the footbridge to a new platform had been incorporated in its design.

But he said expanding the number of platforms at the station was not seen as a priority at the moment.

He said: “We have stations, like Cambridge, where there is a pressing need for a new platform and that is being built.

“If we feel new platforms are needed at Ipswich then we will look at that – but it is not a top priority at present.”

n Does the station need to be expanded? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail evening starletters@eveningstar.co.uk