The Anonymous Widower

The Problem With Britain’s And Probably Other Older Railways

This post on IanVisits is entitled West Hampstead Overground Station’s New Footbridge.

Ian had intended to report on the finish of a station rebuilding project at West Hampstead station.

But like many other projects it is running several months late.

Ian says this.

It’s reported that the delay stems from an unexpected massive slab of concrete that was added to the bridge that runs over the railway tracks, and supports the old station entrance.

Plans to pull the old building back and release more space on the pavement may now need to be revised as that would require the pavement to be reinforced to the same level as the road, in case a heavy lorry were to swerve onto the pavement by accident.

The old Edwardian era station building was due to be turned into a “retail opportunity”, although that may now be in doubt if the pavement issue proves intractable.

How many of us have renovated old buildings to find that what is actually there, has little relation to what the surveyors/architects believed was there?

Years ago, I was rebuilding a Listed house and the Listed Building Inspector from English Heritage was very practical. When she asked the Council Planner, if he thought that the house should be like it was built in the 1840s, he said yes!

To which she replied, “So you think there should be outside toilets?”

Everybody except one laughed!

A couple of months later, she came back to see the work and told me of a very rich man, who was rebuilding a Grade II Listed Building, that was several times over budget. Her advice at the time had been knock it down or move, as she felt preservation was impossible. But the neighbours and the wider area, felt that the building should be saved.

I suspect that, if Transport for London had known what they know now, they would have demolished the inadequate station. I don’t think the station is Listed!

Conclusion

We have a preserve all buildings regardless of the cost attitude in this country and it exists in other countries as well.

Look at my post Stuttgart Hauptbahnhof, which outlines the problems there.

Imagine Crossrail with lots of tunnel construction problems and angry protestors!

December 16, 2018 - Posted by | Transport | , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Worth remembering that former Mayor Ken Livingstone began looking at plans which would link together the 3 separate stations at West Hampstead and even add platforms for Chiltern railways and Metropolitan Lines but this also included demolition and local NIMBYs rose up and complained and in the end Ken lost to Boris and we are where we are with Underground still not accessible.

    In most of London ( look at several Crossrail stations ) the old entrance would have been demolished with a temporary ticket office spacious site next to the Thameslink Station (?) with temporary stairs to platforms but this is West Hampstead!

    There also seems to be little chance of the Jubilee Line becoming accessible demonstrating how the Overground and Underground should have been treated together.

    Comment by Melvyn | December 16, 2018 | Reply

    • I actually think, that the Overground could gave been put in a tunnel with tower blocks on top. Weat End Lane could have been made into a pedestrianised tree-lined road with cafes and snall shops on either side and no traffic.

      Comment by AnonW | December 16, 2018 | Reply


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