Double-tracking the Derry-Coleraine section of the line (or at least adding additional passing loops) would enable the introduction of new stops – to enable it to begin serving as a Derry-Coleraine regional/commuter rail network for the North-West.
As part of this, new stops should be introduced as follows :
- A fast-growing town disconnected from the existing rail network despite being less than 3 miles of the Derry Line.
- Ideal solution would be to re-route existing Derry-Coleraine line via Limavady. Could be completed as part of work to dual the overall line.
- City of Derry Airport (CoDA) / Eglinton
- Currently none of the airports on the island are connected to rail.
- A new multi-purpose rail halt at CoDA could serve four purposes :
i. Rail halt for the Airport.
ii. Rail halt for the fast-growing suburb of Eglinton (2011 population = 3,679).
iii. Regional ‘Park & Rail’ facility, to reduce vehicles travelling into Derry, Limavady, Coleraine, Belfast.
iv. Location for a new rail-side Enterprise Zone/Business Park. (There is a significant amount of under-utilised industrially-zoned land beside the Airport e.g. Longfield Industrial Estate East & West).
- Strathfoyle / Foyle Port
- Fast-growing suburb of Derry. Located 4 miles from city centre, but feels physically very disconnnected from it.
- Strathfoyle is situated right beside the railway track, and approx 1 mile from A2 dual-carriageway into Derry. Rail could therefore provide attractive alternative to road for travel into Derry.
- Strathfoyle also located beside Foyle Port – which has significant land-holdings in the area, and is progressing plans to utilise them for data centres etc. A halt at Strathfoyle could also serve the Port too.
- Further house-building could be encouraged at Strathfoyle once a rail halt was established there – integrating spatial planning, land-use development and sustainable travel.
- HQ for 500 civil servants at the Department of Agriculture, Environment & Rural Affairs.
- Rail line also passes through huge 776 acre former Shackleton Barracks site, which is earmarked for further development.