Transport for Wales is designing a transport system that works for everyone. As part of this transformational programme, TfW is leading development work to improve Wales’ busiest rail station - Cardiff Central.

The Cardiff Central Enhancements Programme will increase capacity, reduce congestion and transform the passenger environment.

The aim of the programme is to deliver improvements to Cardiff Central to make it fit for purpose now and into the 2040s, whilst enabling it to form part of an integrated transport hub (including the new bus station, active travel (walking and cycling) provision a and improved taxi rank and drop off points) which enables accessible, seamless and sustainable travel as well as supports a vibrant and diverse economy, and provides an iconic gateway to Wales.

We’re using project management processes commonly used in the rail industry to manage, develop and deliver our plans for improving Cardiff Central station and the surrounding transport connections to help us minimise and mitigate the risks associated with delivering the scheme.

We estimate that planning consent for the construction of initial improvements at Cardiff Central will be given in autumn 2024, with works starting summer 2025, and lasting for approximately 2-3 years. 

The funding will be provided through a series of partners - Department for Transport, Cardiff Capital Region and the Welsh Government.


Stages for improving Cardiff Central and surrounding transport connections
Output definition This stage establishes the scope of investment and the work being proposed.

In particular, it considers:

  • The objective, scope, timing, and specification of the enhancement;
  • Funding for the project and any project risks;
  • Procurement methodology: what should be undertaken in development and implementation works;
  • Any likely interface with existing railway operations and other relevant projects and route strategies;
  • Other stakeholders involvement
Project feasibility During this phase, the views, ideas and aspirations for Cardiff Central station and its surrounding transport connections are gathered to inform the feasibility of initial designs of various options.

Following successful review and prioritisation of the investment proposal, this stage moves the project forward.

Summer 2021 - spring 2022 COMPLETE
Option selection At the end of this phase, the various options available to improve the station will have been identified; each of these available options will have been assessed; and a single option and outline design will have been recommended. The business case should confirm whether or not the chosen option is affordable, including consideration of whole-life cost issues, whether it can be delivered in a reasonable timescale, whether it will provide value for money, and, on this basis, whether to proceed to detailed station design and implementation. Spring 2022 - spring 2024 COMPLETE
Single option development Development of the chosen single station option selected in the option selection stage commences to create the outline design. Outline designs are produced, and any technical or legal issues that could cancel an option or a project are usually identified by this point. Spring 2024 - autumn 2024 LIVE
Detailed design This stage will deliver the full engineering design for Cardiff Central which will be used to deliver the improvements. This includes cost time estimates, resources and risk assessments will have been completed.   Funding not yet committed
Construction, test and commission Construction of the improvements to Cardiff Central are built to the design and specification detailed during the previous stage. It’s tested to confirm everything is operating as specified and commissioned into use.   Funding not yet committed