Commuters travelling on Scotland’s busiest railway line between Glasgow and Edinburgh face severe disruption, as it has been announced that the direct line between Glasgow and Edinburgh will be shut for six weeks over the summer.
The direct route between Glasgow and Edinburgh will be closed between 13 June and 27 July 2015. As the examination period ends 22 May and second semester ends 29 May the closure will not affect most students traveling home to or from Edinburgh. The 2015 Edinburgh Fringe Festival to be held between 7 August and 31 August so the closure will not disrupt people traveling to the festival from Glasgow.
The closure has been caused by the need to shut Winchburgh tunnel in West Lothian to do work on the tunnel to accommodate a £750 million electrification scheme on the line. Passenger groups say the disruption was avoidable but Scotrail have stated that the closure was needed to ensure that rail routes from Dunblane and Stirling were kept open as there are alternative routes between Glasgow and Edinburgh by train, but no alternative routes between Dunblane or Stirling to Edinburgh.
Trains will run from Glasgow to Linlithgow where passengers will have to change onto either another train or a rail replacement bus service to complete their journey. This will significantly raise their journey time.
There are alternatives for commuters wishing to avoid the disruption. There are three other rail lines between Glasgow and Edinburgh however these routes are indirect and there journey time is 50% longer than the direct route. There is also the Scottish CityLink bus service which has busses an hour between Glasgow and Edinburgh at peak times that depart from Buchanan Bus Station.