A railway station in Bathgate, Scotland, has been opened for business as preparations continue for the launch of the £300m ($475m) Airdrie-Bathgate rail link in December.
It is the first element of the Airdrie to Bathgate line to enter service, and the opening marks the end of major construction work on the project, with the line ready for driver training ahead of the introduction of regular passenger services.
Constructed by Network Rail and funded by Transport Scotland, the route will allow passengers to travel from Helensburgh and Milngavie, in the west, to Bathgate and Edinburgh in the east.
Facilities at the station, which will be operated by ScotRail, include a ticket office, waiting shelters, help points, cycle racks, a pick up/drop off zone, taxi waiting areas, two bus stops and 400 parking spaces.
The Airdrie-Bathgate rail link project includes building 15 miles of track to connect communities in West Lothian and North Lanarkshire and restoring rail services to the country’s two biggest cities.
Work involved building Bathgate and Drumgelloch stations, with improvements to Livingston North and Uphall as part of the project, which has also seen new stations built at Armadale, Blackridge and Caldercruix.
The opening of a station was marred by disruption to services due to problems with an overhead power cable west of Livingston.