Network Rail has opened a new £22 million Rail Operating Centre (ROC) in Rugby – one of 12 being built nationwide to replace the UK’s network of antiquated signal boxes.
Built by Morgan Sindall, the ROC was opened by the leader of Rugby Borough Council, Michael Stokes, and route manager Martin Frobisher.
ROCs will eventually take over the functions of more than 800 signal boxes around the country. Six of the 12 operating centres, including Rugby, are brand new – others include Manchester, York, Basingstoke, Romford and Three Bridges.
The first signalling scheme, which covers the Stafford area, has already been migrated to Rugby ROC. From Easter 2016, signalling around the Norton Bridge area will also be controlled from the operating centre.
Andy Scott of Network Rail said: “This new rail operating centre is an essential part of our Railway Upgrade Plan to provide a better service to passengers and will make sure Rugby is a key location on the railway map for decades to come.
“When fully operational, it will help to boost performance, increase capacity and provide a better level of service to passengers. It will also help the railway recover more efficiently during periods of disruption.”