A spur railway off the HS2 line at Birmingham could use a driverless automated train to provide a link between the mainline railway and the airport.
Although Birmingham airport already has a railway station on the existing mainline railway, the route for HS2 puts it a bit too far away from the terminal buildings for a simple travolator style link.
Hence, they’ve shown off plans for an Automated People Mover (APM) that will link HS2’s new Interchange Station in Solihull to Birmingham Airport in just 6 minutes. When fully operational, the people mover will carry up to 2,100 passengers per hour in each direction.
The roughly 20 metre long people mover vehicles will depart from each stop approximately every 3 minutes. They will pick up passengers from the HS2 Interchange Station, and then travel 2.3 kilometres across an elevated viaduct stopping at the National Exhibition Centre, then Birmingham International railway station then heading into the heart of Birmingham Airport.
The plans are suggestive that the current AirRail Link that connects the mainline railway station to the terminal buildings might then be closed as it would duplicate the new APM.
The exact vehicular system to operate the APM is still to be decided and they will be maintained in a dedicated maintenance facility which will be located along the viaduct on the eastern side of the M42 crossing.