The sites of two new railway stations for the Levenmouth rail link have been announced.
A railway station will be built behind the leisure centre near Leven town centre, and will be known as Leven Station.
Meanwhile, Cameron Bridge Station will be built to the east of the A915.
The announcement by Transport Minister Graeme Dey on Tuesday marks a major milestone in the bid to bring passenger services back to Levenmouth.
It follows a lengthy consultation where the public were given their chance to state where they would like the stations to go.
Three possible sites were mooted for Leven Station along with just one for Cameron Bridge.
Trains, including direct services to Edinburgh, will start running in 2024.
Levnmouth rail link will be double tracked and electrified
Mr Dey also confirmed the line will be double tracked and electrified.
The decision to reopen the Leven to Thornton line came in August 2019 following a long-running campaign led by the community.
And detailed appraisal work concluded the return of rail after a 50-year gap would improve employment opportunities and enhance access to education, health and leisure services.
The project timeline remains on track.”
David Torrance MSP.
Tuesday’s announcement has been widely welcomed.
Mid Fife and Glenrothes SNP MSP Jenny Gilruth said: “Reopening the rail link will enhance the local economy and access to employment and education opportunities for my constituents.
“Confirmation of the new station names and locations is an important step forward and will add to the interest and excitement around the reopening of the line.
“Securing a commitment from the Scottish Government to re-establish Leven’s railway was perhaps the proudest moment of my first term as constituency MSP.
“Ensuring the railway is delivered in the context of the ongoing global pandemic and post-Brexit uncertainty is perhaps the biggest challenge in my second term.”
Today marks another exciting milestone.”
David Torrance MSP.
Kirkcaldy SNP MSP David Torrance added: “I was delighted to see such enthusiasm from the transport minister for the delivery of this project in an area in much need of regeneration.
“It was also extremely encouraging to hear from Network Rail that despite the difficulties faced as a result of the pandemic, the project timeline remains on track.”
“There can be no doubt that this project will change the future for so many living in the Levenmouth area and today marks another exciting milestone in that journey.”
Campaigners welcome the progress
The news was also welcomed by Levenmouth rail link campaigners, who said they were delighted progress has been made.
However, Levenmouth Rail Link Campaign chairman Eugene Clarke expressed concern about the lack of public involvement so far.
“The consultation took time to get going and we’re concerned it means not all voices will be heard,” he said.
“Levenmouth people have made it absolutely clear they want their stations with certain facilities and we’ve yet to get a commitment on that.”
Mr Dey said the growth in rail use was in line with the Scottish Government’s commitment to invest in sustainable transport.
“I’m pleased to confirm that we plan to double track and electrify the Levenmouth rail link and also open two new stations,” he said.
“This will ensure local communities can benefit from improved connectivity and sustainable travel options.”
He added: “I look forward to seeing this exciting project get under way in the coming months and would like to thank everyone involved in getting it to this stage.”