The Network Rail Freight Route Utilisation Study, published March 2007, identified the Felixstowe, Ipswich and Peterborough to Nuneaton route as requiring gauge and capacity enhancement to meet growth in demand.
Hutchison Ports (UK) Ltd. (HPUK)—the owner of the Port of Felixstowe—is funding the cost of upgrading the gauge capability and capacity of the route between Felixstowe, Ipswich, Peterborough and the east coast main line and South Yorkshire.
The funding commitment from HPUK was made through a Section 106 agreement relating to the planning approval for Port of Felixstowe south quay reconfiguration.
The Peterborough to Nuneaton route has received £80 million in funding support through the Transport Innovation Fund (TIF) for gauge and capacity enhancements to complement the work east of Peterborough. This work will start in April 2008.
The business case supporting the Peterborough to Nuneaton gauge and capacity enhancement scheme, for which Productivity Transport Innovation Fund funding was announced in October 2007, estimated that these improvements have the potential to remove 65,000 lorry journeys per annum from a number of roads including the A14 when completed.