Network Rail has unveiled plans to invest £10.5bn to deliver faster, more frequent services for passengers and freight users under the next five-year control period that runs from 2014 to 2019.
The investment plans include the construction of the Northern Hub, worth £560m, in order to deliver more than 700 extra services a day between Leeds, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle upon Tyne and Sheffield.
They also include the completion of key projects, worth £4.9bn, that are currently underway, such as Thameslink, Crossrail and committed electrification schemes.
The investments are expected to increase economic growth by linking UK cities, providing an additional 180,000 seats at peak time, and accommodating a 30% increase in rail freight tonne kilometres.
The plans are also aimed at reducing the industry's carbon emissions per passenger kilometre by 25%, in addition to generating social and economic benefits for the country worth 4.5 times the schemes' cost.