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Plans for a new railway line and a new station in Skelmersdale have taken a step forward.

A business case for improving transport, including better connectivity with regional hubs in Liverpool, Manchester and Preston, opening up employment, education and training opportunities, as well as new leisure activities , has been submitted to the government.

The proposals for better links with big cities will encourage business development in the city, supporting new and existing developments, providing a catalyst for regeneration and future investments, leading to sustainable transformational change.

It would also significantly contribute to decarbonization, local air quality and healthy and active travel programs.

The options for the new rail link would link Skelmersdale to the existing Liverpool Central – Kirkby – Wigan Wallgate rail line costing between £ 210million and £ 700million.

The estimated journey times for the Town Center station options would be 35 minutes to Liverpool Central and 18 minutes to Wigan Wallgate.

Submission to government will seek agreement to move to the next stage in the development process.

The Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) was developed by Lancashire County Council, in partnership with organizations such as Merseytravel, Network Rail and West Lancashire Borough Council.

The County Council also worked closely with the Ministry of Transport in relation to the development and finalization of the SOBC and followed their guidelines to ensure that all available options were properly assessed.

County Councilor Charlie Edwards, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, said: “This is an important step in the long and very detailed process that we must go through to bring these major rail improvements to the people of the region. city.

“Improving the public transport network will help encourage the regeneration of the neighborhood and make the city a more attractive place to live, work, visit and invest.

“By providing a high-quality, sustainable public transport service, it reduces the need for some car journeys, which reduces emissions and traffic levels.

“Skelmersdale is a unique part of Lancashire due to its radical conception as a new town in the 1960s. Unfortunately, as the town grew, the rail link was never restored.

“In recent years, the county council has worked to increase transportation options, which will open up new opportunities for people who live and work in the city.

“We hope the people of Skelmersdale will fully support this plan and we will defend this and other rail investments in Lancashire in our conversations with the government.”

The line will again connect Skelmersdale to the rail network, which was closed to passengers in November 1956.

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