of the costs people hear about these days are reconstruction, modernisation and expansion projects on the national network
– operated by Network Rail.
Costs of Network Rail projects appear very high for the physical outcome because:
Work is usually done in short possessions (line closures) requiring large numbers of people and huge amounts of equipment
for a very short time, usually at unsocial hours. Everything has to be moved onto site, used for a few hours, then removed
so that trains can run again.
People and equipment may be tied up for several days to actually do only a few hours work. Apparent
costs on Network Rail projects are often as much as ten times more than real hourly or daily rates.
Most of the Network Rail projects involve dismantling an existing system, installing and commissioning something new,
under severe time pressure. Everything must be made workable in a few hours, often in many stages of installation, testing
(c) Network Rail is a large organisation with high overhead costs.
External estimates have been based on the costs of recent projects on the National Network.