The Anonymous Widower

Crossrail 2 Consultation – Wandsworth Common Shaft

This Crossrail document is entitled Wimbledon to Clapham Junction.

If contains a small section about a proposed shaft that will be built at Wandsworth Common. It says this about the two shafts between Clapham Junction and Wimbledon.

Between Wimbledon and Balham stations – one shaft in the Weir Road site and another within the Springfield Hospital development

Between Balham and Clapham Junction stations – one shaft on the eastern edge of Wandsworth Common, at the end of Honeywell Road.

A single worksite would be required to build each shaft and a typical shaft would take approximately five years to complete. Activity on site would fluctuate during this period. Once the site has been cleared and prepared, the major construction work to dig out the shaft would usually be complete within two years

This map from the Crossrail 2 document shows the position of the shaft at Wandsworth Common.

Wandsworth Common Shaft Site

Wandsworth Common Shaft Site

This is a map of the rail lines as they pass the site.

Between Clapham Junction And Wandsworth Common Stations

Between Clapham Junction And Wandsworth Common Stations

The shaft will be at the position, where the Google Map has the Wandsworth Common legend. The Crossrail 2 document says this.

The shaft would be on the eastern edge of Wandsworth Common, at the end of Honeywell Road (off Bolingbroke Grove). Our current preferred site has been selected because it is the only non-residential piece of land in the area which is large enough to allow construction of a shaft.

This morning I walked from Clapham Junction station at the top of the map to Wandsworth Common station at the bottom and took these pictures.

Most of my thoughts are in the comments for the pictures, but I would also add the following.

  • The site of the shaft seems to have been chosen with care, so that no mature trees are affected. It’s all flat grass.
  • I have a feeling that for Health and Safety reasons the designers like shafts in large open spaces. Crossrail trains hold 1,500 passengers. Evacuating them into Wandsworth Common or Mile End Park would be easier than say bringing them up in the City.
  • Information appears to be very preliminary at the moment. That at Wimbledon is more detailed and I would expect more detail on Wandsworth Common in the future.
  • I’d never been to Wandsworth Common before and what surprised me most, was that it appeared to be on top of a hill. I have a feeling that this could make the routing of the tunnel less complicated and it could be deeper under all the buildings.

The Head House

People worry, that they’ll get some awful head house on the shaft, like those for the Channel Tunnel Rail Link, which look like they were used as defences against Napoleon.

This shows the head house, that Crossrail is building in Mile End Park.

Mile End Park Vent Shaft

In fact the Mile End Park shaft, with an appropriate head house, would probably be closest to what is proposed to be built at Wandsworth Common.

  • It will be a similar size underground.
  • As head houses will be here for virtually ever, lots of care is taken in their design.
  • They are both in large open spaces.
  • They both have good road access on wide roads.

The shaft at Mile End Park was one of several designed by Fereday Pollard. Not all were actually built, as Crossrail cut a few out in the detailed design phase.


The biggest worry for many is the construction of the shafts.

This Google Map shows the site of the Mile End Park shaft under construction.

Mile End Park Shaft Site

Mile End Park Shaft Site

I estimate the work site is around fifty metres across and has been deliberately positioned alongside the road.

The black hole is the actual shaft.

When I wrote How Will Crossrail 2 Affect De Beauvoir Town?, about how Crossrail 2 will affect where I live, I said this.

I’m pretty certain, that the digging of the southern shaft at Site A will be the only major part of the construction, that will affect De Beauvoir Town, as I suspect they’ll have to remove the spoil in a succession of trucks. I estimate there will be about 10,000 cubic metres of spoil to remove to create the hole for the shaft.

As the shaft at Wandsworth Common is probably the same size as that at Dalston, it would mean about a thousand truck loads, spread over the time that the shaft was being dug. Unless, they decide to  use conveyors to move the spoil across the Common to the railway. I’m not sure what they did at Mile End, but I haven’t heard of any complaints.

The big difference between Wandsworth Common and a lot of the other sites, is that there will be no demolition.

It is a perfect green field site. I doubt there’s any gas mains or power cables across the site.


I think that everybody who lives in South London, will get lots more hassle from the large construction project at Wimbledon, where according to current plans, the station will be completely rebuilt for Crossrail 2.

If I lived near Wandsworth Common, I would start to think now, what would be appropriate for a head house to the shaft, as if cards are played right, then Crossrail 2 will provide it.

Wandsworth might like a temple in a garden.

A Temple In A Garden

This was actually built in the 1960s as the head house of a ventilation shaft for the Victoria Line in Gibson Square, Islington.

We need more whimsey!



November 30, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , | 1 Comment

Crossrail 2 Consultation – Angel Station

This Crossrail document is entitled Angel Station.

The current Angel station is not a run-of-the-mill station with long escalators, an unusual platform layout and a situation in the ground-floor of an office block!

But as it was only built in the 1990s, I suspect the design is such to aid the construction of the Crossrail 2 station.

This is TfL’s proposal for the Crossrail 2 station at Angel.

  • 2×250 metre long platforms.

  • Station platform tunnels around 30 metres below ground level to the top of tunnel

  • An increase in capacity within the existing Northern line ticket hall to accommodate a Crossrail 2 ticket hall on Islington High Street

  • An enlarged station entrance and a new second entrance onto Torrens Street

  • An underground connection between Crossrail 2 and Northern line services

  • A facility for reversing Crossrail 2 trains

The last item is possibly surprising, as although they need reversing facilities, I didn’t think it would be Angel.

This map from the document shows the layout of the station and the work-sites.

Crossrail 2 - Angel Station

Crossrail 2 – Angel Station

The four work-sites are as follows.

  • Site A – The site of the Royal Bank of Scotland building would be used for station tunnelling works and construction of the station entrance, station box and station shaft.
  • Site B – Includes Iceland and other properties to the north of White Lion Street. This site would be used for construction of the station shaft. Impacts on Chapel market would be avoided.
  • Site C – At the southern part of Torrens Street, the location of the old entrance to Angel station would be used as access to support the construction of the underground connection between Crossrail 2 and the Northern line.
  • Site D – The Public Carriage Office site, which is owned by Transport for London, could be used for construction of a facility for reversing Crossrail 2 trains at Angel. This is subject to further investigation.

I have walked round the Angel and the various sites taking pictures in the order A, C, D and B.

All of this leaves me with these observations, thoughts and conclusions.

  • All sites except D are bordered by roads carrying large amounts of traffic.
  • The chaotic Junction At The End of White Lion Street needs easing before rebuilding Angel station.
  • It is quite surprising how far the Northern Line platforms are from the entrance to the station. Sadly, this history will probably mean that there will be no simple interchange between the two lines as is promised at Balham.
  • I would split the Northern Line into two lines before building Crossrail 2, as this might take pressure of Angel station during building of Cropssrail 2.
  • I think it is also a pity, that there is no entrance to the station shown on the Chapel Market side of the road.

On the plus side, I can’t see the design of the station causing too many problems in both design and construction.

November 9, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – King’s Road Chelsea Station

The reason for my walk this morning, between Sloane Square and Imperial Wharf stations, was to look at Crossrail 2’s plans for King’s Road Chelsea station.

If the station is built it will sit between Victoria and Clapham Junction stations.

This Google Map shows the area.

Victoria To Clapham Junction

Victoria To Clapham Junction

Victoria station is in the top right corner and Clapham Junction is at the bottom of the map.


So what do Crossrail 2 say about the need for a King’s Road Chelsea station in their document about the station. They say this.

A station in the Chelsea area has always been part of the Chelsea – Hackney line safeguarding since it was first proposed in 1989. A Crossrail 2 station in Chelsea would improve community access to rail based public transport in an area where current service levels are low in comparison to similar inner London locations. It would also improve connectivity to the Royal Brompton and Royal Marsden hospitals and provide access to the existing retail and commercial developments along King’s Road. Providing a Crossrail 2 station in Chelsea would also improve journey times for those travelling to or from King’s Road.

Chelsea currently suffers weekday congestion and delays on its main roads. By 2031 congestion on London’s roads is expected to increase by 60 per cent. Providing a Crossrail 2 station would encourage more people to use public transport, which would help to reduce traffic congestion in the area and improve air quality.

That is an answer that would persuade someone like me, who doesn’t drive and knows the arguments for buses and trains, but to the average selfish driver of a high-powered car or off-road vehicle, that is almost an insult.

The Google Map does show the enormous problem in working out the route of Crossrail 2.

Victoria and Clapham Junction stations are about four kilometres apart, so for safety and ventilation reasons any tunnel between the two stations will need an access shaft.

And what lies between the two stations? The River Thames!

I’m sure that part of the reason for a new station in the Chelsea area, is to provide the necessary shaft for the tunnels, as the only other alternative is somewhere in Battersea and that is probably too close to Clapham Junction.

This creates a wonderful irony for Chelsea. Suppose that Crossrail 2 decide that because of opposition, they are going to drop building a station in Chelsea.

They might still decide to build a shaft in perhaps a block of flats, in the same way they did on Moorgate with Moor House.

So Chelsea would have an unseen emergency access and ventilation shaft, but no station.

This map from the Crossrail 2 document shows the proposed station and its shafts, entrances and work-sites.

King's Road Chelsea Station

King’s Road Chelsea Station

This Google Map shows the area of Site A in an enlarged format.

King's Road Chelsea Station Site A

King’s Road Chelsea Station Site A

Site A is described like this by Crossrail 2.

Includes the Chelsea Garden Centre and Farmers Market. This would be the main worksite for construction of the station tunnels, station entrance, ticket hall and station shaft. Although the site boundary includes 250 King’s Road and 151 Sydney Street, these buildings would be retained.

I would assume that the buildings to be retained are these on the corner.

Along The Kings Road

This Google Map shows the area of Site B in an enlarged format.

King's Road Chelsea Station Site B

King’s Road Chelsea Station Site B

Site B is described like this by Crossrail 2.

Includes retail and office buildings adjacent to The Pheasantry and extends across Jubilee Place, which would be closed temporarily. This site would be used for construction of the eastern station shaft.

The Pheasntry, where Pizza Express has their restaurant is to the right of Waterstones and Ryman

Along The Kings Road

Jubilee Place is to the left of Waterstones and appears to be one-way away from the King’s Road.

This station design is not very ambitious, when you compare it to Balham or Dalston, in that it appears to be single as opposed to double-ended.

Is this because there is no interchange with other lines or because Crossrail 2 want to have to argue only one entrance with protestors?

What Will The New Buildings Be Like?

Obviously I don’t know, but I can make a few points.

  • On both sites A and B, I suspect that both shafts and the station at Site A will be incorporated into buildings in keeping with the area.
  • It looks from the proposed position of the station entrance, that if the building on the corner of Site A is to be retained as Crossrail 2 say, then it will double as the station.

Surely, this would be two briefs that would be welcomed by one of our world-class architects.


This is probably the most difficult station to build for Crossrail 2.

Not in terms of the actual engineering, but in the sensitive nature of the site and the local residents.

But as I said earlier, I have a feeling that if Crossrail 2 is built it will have to build something in the Chelsea area, due to London’s geography.





November 8, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , | 1 Comment

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – Tooting Broadway Or Balham

In Crossrail 2 Changes its Mind under Tooting Broadway Or Balham, I wrote this.

Both Tooting Broadway and Balham stations are on the Northern Line, but I think Balham is being preferred as it is also a busy main line station.

As some of the main line services through Balham, are duplicated by Crossrail 2, the new line now offers opportunities to release the pressure off the lines through Balham.

If you look at a map of the railway lines in the area, it may be that Crossrail 2 will send the new tunnels in a wide circle from Balham to Wimbledon under Tooting and Haydons Road stations, so that the tunnels are dug totally under existing railway land.

Using Balham rather than Tooting Broadway seems a good idea.

I don’t live in |South London, or even know it too well, so I’ll accept that what I said could have been a comment in haste.

This report from This is South London is entitled Sadiq Khan demands answers as Balham is proposed instead of Tooting Broadway in Crossrail and says this.

It comes after ground faults near Tooting were discovered, meaning work there would take two years longer than originally estimated and cost more.

The news was met with frustration as many said Tooting needed the station more than Balham.

I know he’s the local MP, so he will stick up for his constituents.

Let’s look at the two stations.

This Crossrail 2 document is entitled Wimbledon To Clapham Junction and I’ve used it for information.

Tooting Broadway

These pictures show the area around Tooting Broadway station.

Tooting Broadway station is a typical Underground station on a busy surburban shopping street, that appears to be ruined by heavy traffic. I certainly wouldn’t go there to shop.

Tooting Broadway station is in the London Borough of Wandsworth

It is on the Northern Line

The Crossrail 2 document says this about a station at Tooting Broadway.

To relieve crowding on the Northern line, we had proposed a station at Tooting Broadway. Land for this was safeguarded earlier this year and further work on the station design has been completed to inform this consultation. Recent assessments have identified that ground conditions in the Tooting area would make it significantly more difficult to build a station at Tooting Broadway than originally thought. As a result of these challenges, we are looking at an alternative station location at Balham.

Work to date has suggested that a station at Balham could be built with significantly less disruption and would still provide many of the same transport benefits as a station at Tooting Broadway.

A station at Tooting Broadway would take up to two years longer to build, would require much larger worksites and thousands more lorry movements. This is because a station there would have to be built from the surface with more material removed by road. This would mean it would be more disruptive and cost nearly twice as much to build than a station at Balham.

I also think that even the world’s greatest architect, would have problems creating a decent station for the area.

If I lived in Tooting, I’d think that all those lorry movements would say that Balham can have the station and I’ll go there for shopping and entertainment.

Perhaps the only reason to build a station at Tooting Broadway, would be that it would make it easy to get away from the place.


These pictures show both the Tube and main line station at Balham.

I have a feeling that Balham is a very rare design for a Tube station in that it has two buildings on either side of the road and I can imagine that Crossrail 2 could serve Balham with a double-ended station with entrances on both sides of the High Road.

A good architect could create a world-class station here, that could act as a magnet for visitors and businesses to the area.

Balham station is in the London Borough of Wandsworth

It is on the Northern Line and also a busy station, through which the Brighton Main Line passes.

There are three trains an hour from Victoria to Epsom via Balham, which is a route duplicated by Crossrail 2. Could there be scope for cutting a few services?

This Google Map shows Balham station.



The Northern Line crosses the main line at virtually a right angle following Balham High Road. The Crossrail 2 line will be built on the Western side of and parallel to the Northern Line.

The two lines would be linked by dedicated passenger tunnels, effectively creating a four platform underground station.

This link means that Crossrail 2 will go some way to meeting a secondary objective of relieving capacity on the Northern line.

It also enables anybody coming from or going to stations south of Balham, like Tooting Broadway for instance, will have a faster route to Central London.

Two work-sites would be used to sink shafts to the new line and Crossrail 2 station.

  • Site B – A Northern one on the site of Balham Waitrose.
  • Site A – A Southern one just south of where the Northern Line crosses the main rail lines.

It is worthwhile looking at the main lines through Balham on this Google Map.

Lines Through Balham Station

Lines Through Balham Station

Note how the lines split to the East of Balham station, with the Brighton Main Line going south.

If you’re building a new Crossrail 2 station at Balham, you should probably rebuild and extend Balham station if that is required to improve services on the Brighton Main Line.

You’ve certainly got a lot of space!

Balham and its new Crossrail 2 station looks an excellent solution, especially as the link between the Northern Line and Crossrail 2 could be made so simple and totally step-free.

Making The Decision

So on a quick look, it would appear that Balham offers the better connectivity and Tooting has ground faults and would be much more difficult, expensive and disruptive to build.

Let’s face it, Tooting does not have any of the charm and space of Balham and save for complete demolition, Tooting Broadway is probably beyond redemption.

In some ways, it gives Sadiq Khan a difficult problem if he is elected Mayor next year. Should he insist as Mayors possibly can, that Crossrail 2 call at Tooting Broadway in his current constituency?

On what I have written here, I think it would be a seriously wrong decision to chose Tooting Broadway.



November 2, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – Capacity On The West Anglia Main Line

The West Anglia Main Line is an overcrowded line from Liverpool Street to Cambridge, Ely and Stansted Airport.

This Crossrail 2 document is entitled Services at Broxbourne, Cheshunt and Waltham Cross.

It says this about creating more capacity.

To create the extra capacity needed to run more services along the West Anglia Main Line, Crossrail 2 would require the addition of more tracks along the route from south of Tottenham Hale station to north of Broxbourne station. This would also allow for a further four trains per hour from all stations on the line to Stratford, in addition to Crossrail 2. In addition, the new tracks could also enable an increase in the number of faster longer-distance services between Liverpool Street, Bishop’s Stortford and Cambridge. We are still at a very early stage in the development of our proposals for the new tracks. We will carry out further consultation in the local areas about these proposals as they develop.

This is the first time, I’ve read that services all Lea Valley stations like Brimsdown, Cheshunt and Broxbourne will have a four trains per hour service to Stratford.

At present there are just a few trains per hour from Stratford to Bishops Stortford, but with the opening of the new Lea Bridge station next year, this may be turned into a more frequent service.

There is also talk of a service called STAR that links Stratford to Angel Road station.

There is a lot of circumstantial evidence on the Internet that mainly because of the need for more and faster longer distance services, whether Crossrail 2 is built or not, that the West Anglia Main Line will be given extra tracks from South of Tottenham Hale station to North of Broxbourne station.

If four tracks were provided this would allow the separation of slow and faster services.

But it would not be a trivial project as all the stations from Tottenham Hale to Cheshunt would need to substantially modified, with most given one or more extra platforms.

Although once it was finished, it would have created the tracks andreadied the station sites for the buildimng of the North-Eastern branch of Crossrail 2.

October 31, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | 1 Comment

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – Tottenham Hale Tunnelling Site

This Crossrail document is entitled Tunnelling Worksite At Tottenham Hale.

This is said.

A new Crossrail 2 portal at Tottenham Hale would include the following:

A retained cutting approximately 300 metres long where the surface railway gradually descends to the tunnel entrance

The tunnel entrance, where the surface railway enters the tunnel and the tunnel boring machines would start from during construction

A worksite for building and equipping the tunnels

It’s all quite simple really and this Google Map shows the area.

Tottenham Hale Tunnelling Worksite

Tottenham Hale Tunnelling Worksite

The worksite is the triangular area, bounded by rail lines, north of the Markfield Beam Engine and Museum. The rail lines are.

You can get a good view of the site from both of the first two lines.

The site seems to be mainly a site that collects London’s demolition rubbish. Some of the pictures came from Could This Be Where Crossrail 2 Is Dug?

In addition to the tunnel portal here, it may also be the starting point of the four-tracking of the West Anglia Main Line to increase capacity.

I have always assumed that the two new slow lines that are being built alongside the West Anglia Main Line will be built on the Eastern side of the current two tracks. I could have made a wrong assumption, but if this is the case, there will need to be tunnels under the main lines so that Crossrail 2 can join up with the slow lines.

October 31, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – Stations

This Crossrail 2 document is entitled A Typical Station.

Read the document and you’ll see that a typical station has the following.

  • Two 250 metre long platform tunnels with platform edge doors.
  • Several cross tunnels
  • Shafts at each end of the platforms for ventilation and evacuation.

It does look as if they’ve gone for the simplest design possible, that meets all needs and regulations.


I’ve been in two Crossrail stations and it does seem that this design is simpler.


October 30, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – Dalston Station

Are us plebs in humble Dalston going to get one of the best and busiest stations on Crossrail 2?

I wrote that opening statement in jest, but think about the proposed combined Dalston station’s position in London’s rail network.

  • It is the most Northerly station before the two branches to New Southgate and Broxbourne link under Stamford Hill.
  • Dalston Junction (Or is it Dalston South?) gives an escalator connection between Crossrail 2 and an up to twenty-four trains an hour to South-East London on the East London Line.
  • Dalston Kingsland (Or is it Dalston North?) gives an escalator connection between Crossrail 2 and all those trains on the North London Line.

So Dalston will become the important interchange for a large number of cross-London journeys. Raynes Park to New Southgate may well be direct, but so many journeys like Norwood Junction to Brimsdown will just be a single change at Dalston.

Crossrail 2 will put Dalston in one of the most important places on the map of London’s rail network.

Crossrail 2’s proposal for Dalston Station

This Crossrail document is entitled Dalston Station.

The proposal in the document starts like this.

The Crossrail 2 station at Dalston would be a double-ended station, with an interchange at Dalston Junction at the southern end, and an interchange with Dalston Kingsland at the Northern end.

So we get three stations in one, which also means that at last there will be a true dry interchange between Dalston Kingsland station on the North London Line and Dalston Junction station on the East London Line.

This map from the document shows the layout of the two existing stations and their connection by means of two two-hundred and fifty metre long underground Crossrail 2 platforms.

Crossrail 2 Dalston Station

Crossrail 2 Dalston Station

It would appear that two shafts will be sunk to the Crossrail 2 tunnels.

  • The Southern one would be in the Tesco Express or the bar next door,
  • The Northern one would be just to the north of Ridley Road in the block containing the NatWest Bank.

Note how much of the route of the Crossrail 2 tunnels, runs on the East side of Kingsland High Street, under the Shopping Centre and the new flats. The tunnels will be at least twenty metres down just to get past High Speed One, which runs under the North London Line and Dalston Kingsland station, so any older buildings will be well above any Crossrail 2 construction.

I would also suspect that High Speed One also makes designing and construction of  the Kingsland end of the station challenging.

The Work Sites

The Crossrail 2 proposal for Dalston station is nothing but ambitious and to build it there will be no less than five work sites.

  • Site A – Would be used as the main site for construction of the station tunnels and southern station shaft
  • Site B – Would be used for construction of a new Crossrail 2 station entrance and ticket hall. The site includes properties on the southern side of Bradbury Street.
  • Site C – Would be used for construction of the northern station shaft and escalator connection to the Crossrail 2 platforms
  • Site D – Would be used for construction of a new bridge providing access from the new ticket hall to the westbound platform at Dalston Kingsland
  • Site E – Would be used for construction of a station entrance and ticket hall, for interchange with Dalston Junction station.

But I would be very surprised if the work wasn’t phased so that the work-load in Dalston was spread and work is performed in a logical order.

Dalston Kingsland station is a dump compared to Dalston Junction station, with all the charm, access problems and convenience of a Victorian tube station.

In a reasonable world, it would be replaced now, whether Crossrail 2 is built soon or postponed to the Twenty-Second Century.

The need for a Site D indicates that a new bridge will be built across the station to give access. As Site D is currently in the construction site for new flats called Fifty Seven East and Dalston Kingland station desperately needs step-free access, then surely this bridge should be built now!

To further assess the work-sites, I walked along Tottenham Road to Site A, then crossed to Site E, before walking up Kingsland High Street to look at Sites B, C and D.

There is certainly, a lot going on and if everybody gets it right, it can become one of London’s more important High Streets.

What Is Already Happening In Kingsland High Street?

Before I come to my conclusions, I’ll say a little about what is already happening.

  • Plans may have been published to rebuild Dalston Kingsland station.
  • There are more projects to build  flats in the area. London needs housing and as these will be designed so they don’t affect Crossrail 2, they will go ahead.
  • The Dalston Kingsland Shopping Centre is supposed to be being rebuilt.
  • There are also plans to improve the pedestrian flows on what is a very congested road for walkers.
  • There will be other changes due to the Cycle Superhighway passing about fifty metres to the west of Kingsland High Street.

So in say four or five years time, we should have a better High Street and Kingsland station, whether Crossrail 2 is coming or not!


So what are my initial conclusions?

  • Because of the station design, there will need to be some demolition at both current stations.
  • Site A needs a full rebuild, as it has very little property of merit and I certainly wouldn’t miss the Subway, Tesco and the bar on the end. The shaft to access the new platforms, will probably be in the middle of the current Tesco.
  • Site  B is in a bad state with much of the property locked up. Some of the properties on Bradbury Street will need to be demolished to rebuild Dalston Kingsland station, let alone build the Crossrail 2 station. Will anybody mourn?
  • Site C is where the Northern shaft will be. There will be some demolishion.
  • Site D is a curious one in that it is inside a site that is being developed.
  • Site E is where the new entrance to |Dalston Junction and the Crossrail 2 station is going to be built. I’d have hoped that the Crossrail 2 passages would have been laid out in the redesign of the Overground station. What’s been published gives me doubts!
  • How much of the demolition will be of properties worth keeping? Those that I photographed didn’t shout save me!

There are three sites on the High Street, which will be very much affected by the rebuilding of Dalston Kingsland station and building of Crossrail 2.

  • Site A, where the Southern shaft for the station is located.
  • Site B, where the Northern entrance to the new station is proposed, is substantially closed at present.
  • Site C, opposite Dalston Kingsland station that will contain the Northern shaft for the station and escalator connection to the Crossrail 2 platforms.

All could be developed with new residential or commercial properties on top.

I believe that the proposed plan for the new Crossrail 2 station should be treated as what it is, just a proposal.

Or at least as far as the above ground presence is concerned.

All three sites could be developed as welcoming portals to enhance the public transport system as it serves the area around Dalston.

I would apply the principle, that access to the Crossrail 2 station, should be available from both sides of Kingsland High Street at both the Northern and Southern ends.

I will now look at each site in detail.

Site A

This is a Google Map showing Dalston Junction station and Site A.

Dalston Junction Station And Site A

Dalston Junction Station And Site A

Note the station and its towers above in the East and Bentley Road Car Park in the West. You should be able to pick out the Tesco Express on the Kingsland Road.

I walk to Dalston Junction station most days to get the Overground. But it is not a good walking route.

  • The pavements along the Balls Pond Road and Kingsland Road are very narrow and you are squashed between traffic and large numbers of walkers.
  • It is easier to walk up Tottenham Road, but as with the other route crossing Kingsland Road can be difficult.
  • If you live to the South West of Dalston Junction station, it is probably easier to walk to Haggerston station, as I do sometimes.
  • It is particularly difficult to cross at the cross roads where the Balls Pond Road meets the Kingsland Road.

As the frontage of Site A on the Kingsland Road will have to be substantially demolished, in an ideal world, provision would be made to access the escalator and lift connection to the Crossrail 2 station from the West side of Kingsland Road.

Perhaps when the frontage of Site A on Kingsland Road is rebuilt after Crossrail 2 works have finished, it should provide a subway under the road to the station and the sort of shops and cafes, that passengers like in their stations.

It would welcome those, who live to the South West of Dalston Junction station to the area, just as Dalston Square on the other side of the station welcomes those from the South East.

Site B

This is a Google Map showing Dalston Kingsland station and Sites B and C.

Dalston Kingsland Station And Sites B And C

Dalston Kingsland Station And Sites B And C

Site B is to the North of Dalston Kingsland station, on the West side of Kingsland High Street.

Note that this map was made before the construction of Fifty Seven East started, as Peacocks is still on the West side of Kingsland High Street.

I feel that if they rebuild Dalston Kingsland properly, then then are possibilities to not only build residential or commercial development on top of Site B, but over the railway and the station as well.

Land is expensive and the station occupies almost as much space as Fifty Seven East, so surely a similar sized development over the station would be a welcome addition to London’s housing stock.

I would also hope that the design of the station includes the following.

  • A step-free subway under Kingsland High Street to Ridley Road Market. This is probably a given, as the escalators to Crossrail 2 go down from Site C.
  • As the station is close to the Cycling Superhighway, I suspect that it will be heavily used by cyclists, who would need lots of secure bike parking.
  • Personally, I would like easy walking access along Bradbury Street as I regularly walk to Dalston Kingsland station along that route.

There are certainly lots of possibilities to make the existing Dalston Kingsland station a welcoming North West gateway to Crossrail 2 and Kingsland High Street.

Site C

This is a Google Map showing Dalston Kingsland station and Sites B and C.

Dalston Kingsland Station And Sites B And C

Dalston Kingsland Station And Sites B And C

Site C is to the North of Dalston Kingsland station, on the East side of Kingsland High Street. The NatWest bank, which is at the Northend of Site C is indicated.

Any development on this site must enhance the Ridley Road Market and provide that gateway for those travelling to and from the North East of the station.

It is essential that there is an entrance to the station on the East side of Kingsland High street, to give good connections to the market and the Shopping Centre.


My Ultimate Test Of The New Station

My ultimate test of the new Dalton station would be on a cold and wet day, to have the ability to arrive at Dalston Kingsland station on the North London Line, go down an escalator to Crossrail 2, where I can walk along to the Southern End, go up the escalator and exit the station on the West side through a rebuilt Site A.

And do it pushing my yet-to-be-born great-grandchild in a buggy! The spirit of my grandmother, who was born opposite Dalston Junction station would be very pleased!






October 29, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – Tunnels, Shafts And Head-Houses

Crossrail 2’s underground structures will be very similar to those of Crossrail.


The tunnels will be built in the same way to those of Crossrail, using tunnel boring machines or TBMs.

But I believe there will be slight differences.

  • The tunnels of High Speed One, which Crossrail 2 has to cross at Dalston, are at a depth of 34 to 50 metres, so will we see Crossrail 2 bored across London below all the other foundations and infrastructure?
  • Crossrail 2 will be built some years after Crossrail and tunnelling technology is improving by leaps and bounds.
  • Because Crossrail 2 tunnels will be going through similar terrain to Crossrail, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a much faster process, simply because everything is easier, the second time around.
  • Tunnel spoil will probably be taken away by rail, as only the Tottenham Hale site has access to water.

These tunnels under London are getting very much a routine task.


There is a Crossrail 2 document entitled Crossrail 2 Shafts.

This is said about the need for shafts.

Shafts would connect the underground Crossrail 2 tunnels with the surface. During everyday operations, the motion of trains would push air out of the tunnels and pull air into them from the atmosphere. As the air pushed out is usually warmer than the air pulled in, the shafts would help to provide a more comfortable temperature for passengers and staff. During periods of disturbed service, when trains could be held in Crossrail 2’s tunnels for an extended period of time, the shaft’s ventilation system would deliver cooler air from the atmosphere to the tunnels and to stationary trains. In the unlikely event of a fire, the shafts would control smoke, provide access for the fire and rescue services and provide a safe evacuation route for passengers.

The document also describes what a shaft might look like.

Most of the shaft would be underground with an aboveground structure known as a ‘head-house’. This would provide access to the shaft itself, the equipment within it and the tunnels below. A head-house is ideally located directly above the shaft and tunnels, except in some cases where they can be located separately and connected by a short underground passage. A street-level entrance would provide access for the fire and rescue services, for the safe evacuation of passengers in an emergency as well as for maintenance. Direct access to the head-house is required for emergency and maintenance vehicles.

A typical head-house is also described.

At stations the head-house would typically be integrated with the overall station structure. At locations between stations the head-house would be separate. At this early stage of Crossrail 2 design, we expect a typical headhouse to occupy an area of around 25 metres by 25 metres and to be at least two storeys high – although the size of each head-house would be influenced by local factors including the depth of the tunnels and the height of surrounding buildings at each site. Further design work would be required to determine our requirements at each individual location.

As the Crossrail 2 scheme develops further, we would engage with the relevant local authority, interested stakeholders and local communities to inform the designs for each head-house.

But although the head-houses for the Channel Tunnel Rail Link were all very similar, it is true to say that there is nothing like a standard shaft and head house.

The Ventilation Shafts For Crossrail And The Channel Tunnel Rail Link

It is worthwhile looking at the shafts and head-house designs for Crossrail, which I described in The Ventilation Shafts For Crossrail.

Every one seems different, although I suspect that there lots of similarities in the equipment used.

But compare those with those of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link.

The only certainty about the shafts and head-houses of Crossrail 2, is that they will be smaller, more elegant and better designed.


October 29, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , , | 2 Comments

Crossrail 2 October 2015 – New Southgate Station

This post looks at the works around New Southgate station.

I’ve known this area for over sixty years, as when my father used to take me to his printing works in Wood Green, he would drive past New Southgate and Alexandra Palace stations. Some parts have hardly changed in that time.

In my mind Alexandra Palace station will always be Wood Green station, whereas the Piccadilly Line one will always be Wood Green Tube station.

This Google Map show the area.

Crossrail 2 In New Southgate

Crossrail 2 In New Southgate

New Southgate station is in the top left (North East) and Alexandra Park is at the bottom.

Note the following.

  • The Hertford Loop Line branches off North of Alexandra Palace station to the North East.
  • The station on this line is Bowes Park.
  • To the right (East) of this junction is Bounds Green Depot, where the long distance expresses to the North are stabled and serviced.Bounds Green Depot is due to be upgraded for the new Hitachi trains that will run the services in the next few years.
  • There is a tunnel between New Southgate and Alexandra Palace stations

In this document on the TfL website entitled New Southgate Station, details are given of how Crossrail 2 will be fitted into the area and connected to the East Coast Main Line. This Google Map shows the area North and South of New Southgate station.

Crossrail 2 Sites At New Southgate

Crossrail 2 Sites At New Southgate

There are three main areas of work-sites, all of which are to the East of the railway. Because of the amount of concrete and industrial roofs, they show up white on the map.

  • The top site alongside Oakleigh Road South (A109) is shown on old maps as being railway sidings, is a proposed site for the train depot and stabling, Crossrail 2 and tnnelling support.
  • The second site squeezed between the railway and North of the A406, will be the station site, where new Crossrail 2 platforms will be built.
  • The third site to the South of the A406, which is now part of the Bounds Green Industrial Estate, will be the actual tunnel portal.

One by-product of all this work could be that the North Circular Road (A406) at this point could be opened out. This Google Map shows the area, where the Crossrail 2 station will go, the bridge over the A406 and the area around the proposed Crossrail 2 tunnel portal.

Crossrail 2 Over The A406

Crossrail 2 Over The A406

Note the following.

  1. The map shows most of the two southern work sites for Crossrail 2.
  2. Looking at this it would appear that the Crossrail 2 tunnel portals will be on that green space alongside the portals of the existing tunnels.
  3. The white almost boot-shaped building will be replaced with Crossrail 2 platforms.
  4. The bridge appears to extend far enough to take the extra Crossrail 2 tracks over the A406. It looks like it is used for truck parking at the moment.
  5. Could the condition and size of the bridge, mean that there would be little disruption to traffic durin construction?
  6. There doesn’t appear to be an demolition of residential property.

I just wonder if a top class architect could give New Southgate a spectacular station above the A406.

I’ve driven under that bridge so many times and can see some form of sculptured steel, brick and glass building with a giant Crossrail roundel advertising its presence.

These pictures were taken as I walked down past New Southgate station and crossed the A406.

The Builder Depot is the boot-shaped building and it looks as if it was built on an old railway embankment.

The North Circular Road was certainly very busy.

October 29, 2015 Posted by | Transport | , , , | 2 Comments