As part of the Great North Rail Project, upgrades are being developed for the TransPennine route between Manchester, Leeds and York from 2022. Quickest journey times between Leeds and Manchester will be reduced from 49 minutes to 40 minutes.
Digital signalling technology is already in operation on the London Underground, and Network Rail will now develop options to make the TransPennine route the first digitally controlled intercity rail line in the country.
Network Rail will receive up to £5m to develop proposals for embedding digital technology between Manchester and York. This includes exploring a system of advanced train traffic management so that a computer works out how to route the trains most efficiently along the line.