The Anonymous Widower

Major Upgrade Planned For Norwood Junction Railway Station

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on IanVisits.

Ian introduces his article like this.

A somewhat shabby, and yet quite busy station in South London could get a major makeover if plans by Network Rail are approved.

The proposals are part of the wider plan to clean up the mess of tracks around Croydon to boost the capacity of the lines through the area, but it is also a stand-alone project.

Ian also has this visualisation of the upgraded Norwood Junction station.

Note.

  1. London Bridge station is to the left with East Croydon station to the right.
  2. The Main Station Entrance is on the near side, with the Cuford Road station on the far side.
  3. Platform 1 & 2 is the highlighted island platform on the near side.
  4. Platform 3 & 4 is the highlighted island platform on the far side.

It looks expensive with two step-free bridges.

Both bridges have four sets of steps to.

  • The Main Station Entrance.
  • The Northbound Platform 1 & 2,
  • The Southbound Platform 3 & 4
  • The Culford Road Entrance.

In addition, the Southern bridge has four lifts to the two entrances and two platforms.

Currently, the station has three island platforms.

  • They are connected by a dingy, step-only subway.
  • In the new layout, the central island platform will be removed, to allow a pair of fast lines through the station.
  • One advantage of the subway is during the station upgrade, it can still be used to access the middle platforms, thus easing construction and causing less disruption for passengers.

After the upgrade, the layout will be as follows.

  • Platforms 1 & 2 would be for Northbound trains, with perhaps Platform 1 for stopping and Overground services and Platform 2 for limited-stop and Thameslink services.
  • Platforms 3 & 4 would be for Southbound trains, with perhaps Platform 3 for stopping and Overground services and Platform 4 for limited-stop and Thameslink services.

The subway will probably be closed.

Improved Train Services

For people like me, who live on the Overground, North of Norwood Junction station, hopefully it will solve the problem of getting to Gatwick Airport.

  • It’ll just be a walk across the platform at Norwood Junction station, instead of a tram between West Croydon and East Croydon stations.
  • In the future, would the cross-platform interchange help travellers between Crossrail and Gatwick and the South Coast?
  • The Zeus of the Timetables could even make it better, by increasing the frequency of Thameslink trains between Norwood Junction and  Gatwick Airport stations to match the four trains per hour (tph) between Dalston Junction and West Croydon stations.

Up here in sometimes-forgotten Dalston, I’ll certainly give this new layout at Norwood Junction station, a high score, if the trains are changed to use it to advantage.

Norwood Junction Will Become A Major Interchange?

The walk-across interchange between Northbound services on platforms 1 & 2 and Southbound services on platforms 3 & 4, will mean that the station, will become  station where travellers will change trains.

Suppose you were travelling from Luton to Epsom.

The Journey Planner on http://www.national.co.uk, suggests a double change at Farringdon and Carshalton, with a journey time of 1 hour and 51 minutes.

The upgraded Norwood Junction station, would allow the journey to be done in two legs.

  • Luton and Norwood Junction – one hour and three minutes.
  • Norwood Junction and Epsom – 29 minutes.

It would be quicker and it is a cross-platform change, where hopefully, there will be a climate-controlled waiting room and a coffee stall.

Current frequencies going North are as follows.

  • Anerley – Six tph
  • Balham – Two tph
  • Battersea Park – Two tph
  • Bedford – Two tph
  • Brockley – Six tph
  • City Thameslink – Two tph
  • Clapham Junction – Two tph
  • Crystal Palace – Two tph
  • Dalston Junction – Four tph
  • Farringdon – Two tph
  • Flitwick – Two tph
  • Forest Hill – six tph
  • Gypsy Hill – Two tph
  • Haggerston – Four tph
  • Harlington – Two tph
  • Harpenden – Two tph
  • Highbury & Islington – Four tph
  • Honor Oak Park – Six tph
  • Leagrave – Two tph
  • Hoxton – Four tph
  • London Blackfriars – Two tph
  • London Bridge (Non-stop) – Two tph
  • London Bridge (Stopping) – Three tph
  • London St. Pancras – Two tph
  • London Victoria – Two tph
  • Luton – Two tph
  • Luton Airport Parkway – Two tph
  • New Cross Gate – Six tph
  • Penge West – Six tph
  • Rotherhithe – Four tph
  • Shadwell – Four tph
  • Shoreditch High Street – Four tph
  • St. Albans City – Two tph
  • Streatham Hill – Two tph
  • Surrey Quays – Four tph
  • Sydenham – Six tph
  • Wandsworth Common – Two tph
  • Wapping – Four tph
  • West Norwood – Two tph
  • Whitechapel – Four tph

Current frequencies going South are as follows.

  • Carshalton Beeches – Two tph
  • Cheam – Two tph
  • Coulsdon Town – Two tph
  • Earlswood – Two tph
  • East Croydon – Six tph
  • Epsom – Two tph
  • Ewell East – Two tph
  • Gatwick Airport – Two tph
  • Horley – Two tph
  • Purley – Four tph
  • Purley Oaks – Two tph
  • Redhill – Two tph
  • Reedham – Two tph
  • Salfords – Two tph
  • South Croydon – Two tph
  • Sutton – Two tph
  • Waddon – Two tph
  • Wallington – Two tph
  • West Croydon – Eight tph

In addition these services pass through.

  • Bedford and Brighton – Two tph
  • Ca,bridge and Brighton – Two tph
  • London Brifge and Caterham & Tattenham Corner – Two tph
  • London Bridge and Uckfield – Two tph
  • Peterborough and Horsham – Two tph

It is a very comprehensive list of services and possible destinations.

I believe that if a few more trains stopped at Norwood Junction station, there could be at least two tph to every station connected to Norwood Junction station, with these higher frequencies to the more important stations.

  • Bedford – Four tph
  • Brighton – Four tph
  • Canada Water – Four tph
  • City Thameslink – Eight tph
  • Clapham Junction – Four tph
  • Crystal Palace – Four tph
  • Dalston Junction – Four tph
  • East Croydon – Eight tph
  • Epsom – Four tph
  • Farringdon – Eight tph
  • Finsbury Park – Four tph
  • Gatwick Airport – Four tph
  • Highbury & Islington – Four tph
  • London Blackfriars – Eight tph
  • London Bridge (Non-stop) – Four tph
  • London Bridge (Stopping) – Four tph
  • London St. Pancras – Eight tph
  • London Victoria – Four tph
  • Luton – Four tph
  • Luton Airport Parkway – Four tph
  • St. Albans City – Four tph
  • Stevenage – Four tph
  • Sutton – Four tph
  • Welwyn Garden City – Four tph
  • West Croydon – Eight tph
  • West Hampstead Thameslink – Four tph
  • Whitechapel – Four tph

These frequencies could be attained, by stopping a few extra services at Norwood Junction station.

It is certainly comprehensive and getting to most important areas of Central London is direct or a single change.

  • The step-free changes to Crossrail at Farringdon and Whitechapel will allow simple access to Canary Wharf, the City,, Heathrow, Paddington, the West End and all the towns and cities on the branches.
  • The Bakerloo Line Extension will connect at New Cross Gate.
  • The Central Line doesn’t connect
  • The Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines connect at Farringdon, Kings Cross St. Pancras, London Blackfriars and Whitechapel.
  • The Jubilee Line connects at Canada Water, London Bridge and West Hampstead Thameslink.
  • The Northern Line connects at Kentish Town, Kings Cross St. Pancras and London Bridge
  • The Piccadilly Line connects at Finsbury Park and Kings Cross St Pancras.
  • The Victoria Line connects at Finsbury Park, Highbury & Islington and Kings Cross St. Pancras.

But there are some important places that are not well-connected or have difficult interchanges to Norwood Junction station.

  • Euston station, High Speed Two and the West Coast Main Line.
  • Cannon Street, Charing Cross and Waterloo mean a complicated interchange at London Bridge.
  • The connections to Great Northern services, the North London Line and the Victoria Line at Highbury & Islington need serious improvement.
  • South \east London needs going to London Bridge and coming out again!

Radical thinking and serious improvement is needed.

Milton Keynes Central and East Croydon

This is a useful service for some..

It calls at Bletchley, Leighton Buzzard, Tring, Berkhamsted, Hemel Hempstead, Watford Junction, Harrow & Wealdstone, Wembley Central, Shepherd’s Bush, Kensington (Olympia), West Brompton, Imperial Wharf, Clapham Junction, Balham, Streatham Common, Norbury, Thornton Heath, Selhurst.

But, it has problems.

  • It has a high level of cancellation.
  • It has a totally inadequate hourly frequency.
  • It has no connection to the North London Line at Willesden Junction.
  • It blocks a platform at East Croydon, when it turns round.

In his report on Southern, Chris Gibb recommended that the service be the responsibility of the London Overground. I wrote about this in Gibb Report – East Croydon – Milton Keynes Route Should Be Transferred To London Overground.

To connect High Speed Two at Old Oak Common, there needs to be a four tph service between Croydon and Old Oak Common.

Transport for London are proposing a new Hythe Road station on the West London Line..

  • It will be a seven hundred metre walk to the High Speed Two station. That is too long!
  • There will be a bay platform to turn trains from Clapham Junction.
  • Trains still won’t be able to call at Willesden Junction for the North London Line.

I think that building Hythe Road station is a bad idea.

This map shows the lines in the area.

Surely, the West London Line should have been re-routed over the Eastern end of Old Oak Common station at right angles, which would have the following benefits.

  • Quick and easy interchange with High Speed Two, the Great Western Main Line and Crossrail.
  • The ability to add bay platforms to terminal services.
  • Sharing of station services with the other stations.

Perhaps, though this practical passenger and operator-friendly idea would have ruined the architect’s vision.

Or is it, that the current track layout to connect to the West Coast Main Line only allows crap solutions.

Surely, the amount of money being spent on High Speed Two allows the best to be done everywhere.

London Overground principles say that services must be at least four tph.

The simplest way to do this would be to extend the current Stratford and Clapham Junction service via Willesden Junction to Croydon.

  • It would call at Balham, Streatham Common, Norbury, Thornton Heath, Selhurst, if it followed the current route.
  • I doubt that East Croydon station could handle four tph terminating at the station.

But why not use the route taken by London Victoria and West Croydon services via Wandsworth Common, Balham, Streatham Hill, West Norwood, Gipsy Hill, Crystal Palace, and Norwood Junction, to terminate at West Croydon?

  • This route calls at Norwood Junction, with all its connectivity.
  • If needed, there is space for a new platform at West Croydon.

I’ve no idea, what will happen, but the upgrade at Norwood Junction station should help.

Suppose you were going between Gatwick and High Speed Two..

  • The standard route will be Thameslink and Crossrail with a change at Farringdon.
  • Going on a surface route with a change at Norwood Junction.

The second may be more pleasurable.

Upgrading The Station

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

So could two factory-built bridges like this be installed at Norwood Junction station?

  • The design is adaptable to multiple spans over the tracks.
  • Lifts could be left out for one bridge.
  • Once the site is prepared, I believe the bridges can be quickly installed, probably from a train with a crane.
  • The bridge is probably more affordable, than a traditional design.

During the installation period, the existing subway can be used for platform access.

Conclusion

Obviously, I am speculating that the new footbridge system will be used at Norwood Junction station.

But the new platform and track layout at the station, will certainly improve services on these routes.

  • Between East Croydon and London Bridge stations.
  • Between East Croydon and the London Overground and Crossrail.
  • Between the Overground and Gatwick Airport station and the South Coast.

All of the interchanges will be step-free and some will be cross-plsatform.

 

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June 21, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Why Are Replacement Buses Being Used To Syon Lane Station On July 20-21?

If you look at the on-line rail time timetable from Waterloo to Syon Lane station for Saturday, the 20th and Sunday, the 21st of July, there are no trains and a bus replacement service operates.

I have checked as far as I can in the future and there are no other weekend closures on the route.

In Nothing Seems To Be Happening At Syon Lane Station, I speculated that either the project to erect a step-free bridge at the station, was to be delayed or something very different will be happening.

The two day weekend closure leads me to think that Network Rail are going to install a bridge in two days.

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

I believe that if the components were brought in by train, that this sort of bridge could be erected in two days.

This is real engineering, which is not normally seen except in war or times of great emergency like earthquake, fire or floods.

Conclusion

My speculation must be all wrong!

What sane company would attempt to build a footbridge in two days, without the assistance of Anneka Rice or that guy from DIY SOS?

June 16, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | 1 Comment

Nothing Seems To Be Happening At Syon Lane Station

I passed through Syon Lane station today and thought I’d have a look at the progress on the step-free access to the station.

This page on the South Western Railway web site describes in detail, the works that will be done.

This is the first paragraph.

From the beginning of April, we’ll be building a new accessible footbridge with a lift at Syon Lane. The project is expected to be completed later this year and is mainly funded by Hounslow Council. Making the station step free will be a real positive for people with limited mobility traveling round the Hounslow Loop, however the delivery of the new bridge will affect the station and the platforms. The station will remain operational throughout the works, but there will be some access changes during the project delivery:

Consider  the bit about being finished later this year, then look at these pictures.

It looks like they’ve all packed up and gone home.

Surely, if the bridge is going to be finished this year, workmen should be hard at work building foundations and putting up towers for lifts.

But even the tea-hut has gone.

It appears that the following has been done at the station.

  • Create a level step-free route from Syon Lane to the London-bound platform.
  • Move the ticket machines and the card readers.
  • Run temporary cable ducts, along the back of the platforms.
  • Clear some ground behind the fence, where the lift towers might be placed.
  • The long platforms have been narrowed, which Network Rail say is to give space for the work.

The 3D Google Map shows the station.

I don’t know when the picture was taken, but it does look that there could have been some ground clearing about halfway along the platform.

What Do I Think Is Happening?

I think, there could be these reasons for the lack of action.

  • The project has been delayed for some reason.
  • Something very different is happening at Syon Lane station!

Speaking to a couple of travellers  at the station today, they had heard nothing and one was looking forward to the bridge.

I have no evidence, but I do have a devious and sometimes theatrical mind.

Are Network Rail conducting an experiment on the good people, who use Syon Lane station?

They have only said this about disruption to passengers.

The station will remain operational throughout the works, but there will be some access changes during the project delivery:

Could Network Rail be bringing in the bridge in a few sections and just lifting them in with a crane?

Look at the 3D Google Map above and note that the station in surrounded by houses and lots of leafy trees, which would make getting bridge sections and the crane into place difficult.

But look at the cross-section of the average footbridge tower or bridge and it is about the same as that of a train.

For this reason, I believe that the bridge components will be brought in on a special train with a large crane.

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

It is composed of the following major components.

  • Two towers with lifts.
  • Two sets of stairs
  • A bridge deck.

All components would be built in a factory.

  • They would be fully tested before delivery.
  • The components would be delivered by train.
  • The bridge would then be assembled using a rail mounted crane.

After testing, the Mayor could declare the bridge open

I suspect too, that the only preparation prior to the assembly of the bridge, is to have firm concrete bases for the bridge and a power supply for the lifts.

  • The construction of the bases could be done from the railway, so there would be no problems of bringing in the concrete.
  • The power supply might not even be needed, if the bridge had solar panels on the roof and a clear battery system.
  • It’s all a bit like giant Lego construction, but then the architect of the bridge was Danish!

Could  commuters on a Friday night return to a station little different to the one they’ve known for years and then on Monday morning  find a working step-free bridge has been erected?

Engineering is the sconce of the possible, whereas politics is dreams of the impossible!

Is This The Future Of Step-Free Bridges?

Obviously not all, but I believe that up to a third of all stations that need a step-free bridge can use a bridge of this type.

But the station upgrade to step-free application is just one of several.

  • New stations.
  • Step-free bridges over busy roads, rivers or canals.
  • Replacement of dangerous light-controlled road crossings.

The design could also be incorporated into other buildings.

Conclusion

Something different could be happening at Syon Lane station.

June 11, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Step-Free Access At Brough Station

On my last trip North, I changed trains at Brough station.

The station appears to have been recently rebuilt and has full step-free access using ramps, as these pictures show.

This Google Map shows the station.

It may work, but those ramps could take some time, if you’re pushing a heavy buggy or wheelchair.

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

So would a factory-built bridge like this be installed be installed today, if Brough or a similar simple station was being rebuilt or built from scratch?

  • Concrete bases to support the bridge, would be built in the appropriate position on both platforms.
  • An electrical supply would be provided.
  • A special train would then arrive with the bridge and an crane to lift the bridge into place.
  • A couple of hours later, the bridge would have been erected.

If the system is designed designed, it should be no more difficult than installing a new ticket machine.

Conclusion

How much would be saved in the design and building of new stations, if they were designed around a step-free bridge like this?

But the biggest saving is surely in the time needed to build the station?

June 6, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | 2 Comments

Selby Station To Go Step-Free

This document on the Government web site is entitled Access for All: 73 Stations Set To Benefit From Additional Funding.

Selby station is on the list.

These pictures show the station and the current bridge,

The existing pedestrian bridge has the following.

  • Steep stairs at both ends.
  • No provision for step-free access.

he bridge does appear to be in good condition.

Possible Electrification Through Selby Station

Perhaps most importantly, the current bridge could be too low for 25 KVAC overhead electrification to be erected underneath the bridge.

Although, it might be possible to lower the track or use one of Network Rail’s proven solutions to squeeze the electrification underneath.

At present though, it seems unlikely that the route through Selby will be electrified, due to the problem of the Selby Swing Bridge and Government policy.

Installing Step-Free Access

It could be feasible to add lifts to the existing footbridge, but it doesn’t solve the problem of the steep stairs.

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

So could a factory-built bridge like this be installed be installed at Selby station?

This 3D Google Map shows Selby station.

The platforms to the South of he footbridge are wide and there is lots of space.

Could the new bridge be installed there?

June 5, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

Hither Green Station To Go Step-Free

This document on the Government web site is entitled Access for All: 73 Stations Set To Benefit From Additional Funding.

Hither Green station is on the list.

These pictures show the station and the current bridges,

Like Petts Wood station, which I wrote about in Petts Wood Station To Go Step-Free, Hither Green station is a rather unlovely assemblage.

  • It has all the qualities of the worst corrugated iron buildings.
  • There are five flights of steep stairs.
  • There are two separate bridges.
  • Entry to and exit from the station are from a subway, that links to Platforms 4 and 5.
  • To access Platforms 1,2, 3 and 6, a bridge must be used.
  • I suspect that some interchanges may need crossing both bridges.

This Google Map shows the station.

Note the three pairs of tracks, with six platforms and two bridges.

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

So could a factory-built bridge like this be installed be installed at Hither Green station?

This bridge has the great advantage, that it can be installed without closing the existing bridge.

This Google Map shows the South Eastern section of the station.

Could two bridges linked ny an aerial walkway across the woods be added beyond the covered parts of the station?

Some interchanges would be a walk of perhaps a hundred metres, but they would be fully step-free.

The rest of this terrible station would be left untouched and could be gradually improved in the future.

May 30, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Chalkwell And Southend East Stations To Go Step-Free

This document on the Government web site is entitled Access for All: 73 Stations Set To Benefit From Additional Funding.

Currently, four c2c stations are not step-free.

Note.

  1. tph is trains per hour
  2. The large number is the number of passengers in 2017-18

As Chalkwell And Southend East stations are the two busiest stations without step-free access, they on the list of stations to be improved.

Chalkwell Station

The Current Station

These pictures show Chalkwell station and a selection of views from the path that runs on the seaward side of the station.

This Google Map shows the Eastern End of the station.

I hope it explains some of the pictures.

  • The Booking Office and gate-line are in the building identified by the red rail sign.
  • There are two bridges over the railway.
  • The Western bridge is for pedestrian access between the gate-line and the two platforms.
  • There are steep staircases down to the two platforms.
  • There is also a separate |Eastern bridge, which is to allow pedestrians, cyclists and dogs to cross the railway and access the coastal path, which runs South of the station.

Note too, that the station is very close to the sea.

Adding Step-Free Access At The Booking Office

I think that my pictures also flag up several problems of making the current pedestrian bridge step-free, either by complete replacement or the addition of lifts.

The Pedestrian Bridge At Station Has A Severe Case Of The Moths

Engineers and those that repair vehicle bodies, often refer to rust in steel structures as moth damage. The pedestrian bridge at Chalkwell station was built in 1933 and it appears to have suffered badly in the salty atmosphere close to the sea.

I do wonder, if a structural engineer has said that the bridge will need replacing within a few years.

It should be noted that the second bridge contains a lot more concrete, so this may be in less risk of collapse.

Would An Electric Lift Work Reliably In a Heavy Gale Blowing In From The Sea?

A knowledgeable station guy told me, that he believed the weather would stop a lift being installed on the seaward platform.

The Current Stairs Are Long And Very Steep

I managed them, but then I have a great advantage in that I’m only 61 Kg and can generally climb most stairs, even if I take it slower than some.

Is There Space To Add Lift Towers To The Current Pedestrian Bridge?

It might be possible by the Booking Office, but I suspect that there is not enough space on the seaward side.

The Pedestrian Bridge Would Be Difficult To Replace Whilst Keeping The Station Open

I think it would be nearly impossible to rebuild the bridge or replace it with a new one, whilst keeping the station open.

Why Not Replace Both Bridges?

It might be possible to replace the two bridges with a new single bridge in the position occdupied by the Eastern bridge, that is separate from the station.

But this would be very disruptive to both train passengers and to pedestrians wishing to cross the railway.

A Conclusion About Step-Free Access At The Booking Office

It will be difficult, if not impossible, to add step-free access to the station, whilst keeping it open to passengers, if step-free access is provided at the Booking Office.

Could A Separate Step-Free Bridge Be Built At The Western End Of Chalkwell Station?

This Google Map shows the Western end of the station.

Note that there is a steep slope up from the platform to the road that passes the station on the Northern side.

This picture was taken of the bridge at Maghull North station.

Note how there is a short bridge to the top of the cutting on the left hand side of the bridge.

  • Could a similar arrangement be used at Chalkwell station?
  • It should be possible to build a level path along the top of the slope.
  • The path could connect into the Booking Office behind the gate-line.

I feel this approach would have several advantages.

During Installation Of The New Step-Free Bridge, Platform Access Would Be As Now

Passengers would not be inconvenienced, whilst the new bridge was being installed.

After Installation Of The New Step-Free Bridge, Passengers Would Enter The Station Through The Same Doors And Gate-line

How convenient, especially for occasional travellers, who might be confused by the new layout.

The New Bridge Could Be Placed In The Most Convenient Place

The new bridge could be placed in the best place for the passengers and the optimum place for train loading.

The New Bridge Could Be Built With Minimum Disruption To Services

There would be a big advantage in that the bridge could be built over a working railway, as was the one at Maghull North station.

After Installation Of The Bridge, There Would Be Two Routes To Each Platform

If it were to be decided that  the old pedestrian bridge with its steep stairs were to be demolished, this could be done, at a safe and leisurely pace after the new bridge was deemed to be a good design.

But it may be decided to refurbish the old bridge to keep the two seperate routes.

The Winner Of The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition Could Be Used

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

So could a factory-built bridge like this be installed at Chalkwell station?

An extension from the bridge on one side, would give access to the path to the Booking Office.

Could this bridge be slightly lower, than the current bridge? I suspect, this bridge has been designed so that 25 KVAC overhead electrification can be fixed to the underside of the bridge deck using insulated fittings. The reduced height would make climbing up slightly easier.

Southend East Station

The Current Station

These pictures show Southend East station.

This Google Map shows the station.

There would appear to be plenty of space, but where will the bridge be placed?

If they decided to use a bridge based on the competition winner could probably be placed on the Eastern end of the platforms.

 

 

 

May 14, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | 1 Comment

Stoneleigh Station To Go Step-Free

This document on the Government web site is entitled Access for All: 73 Stations Set To Benefit From Additional Funding.

Stoneleigh station is on the list.

These pictures show the station and the current bridge,

By coincidence, I met the son of an old friend at the station, who lived nearby. He was able to give me a few extra details. Thanks Billy!

Abysmal Step-Free Access

I only exited the station on the Stoneleigh Broadway side and from the platform it was a two staircases up of about fifteen steps and then three similar staircases down.

  • In this day and age that is totally unacceptable.
  • As the station was only built in 1932, it shows the attitude of Southern Railway to passengers of reduced mobility! They are certainly not welcome!
  • Billy told me, that the railway divides Stoneleigh in two and using the bridge to get across is difficult for a lot of people.

There must be very few worse step-free stations than Stoneleigh.

The Station Is Bad For Health, Environment And The Community

How many people, who live on one side of the railway and need to go to the other to see the doctor, visit the library, go to church, have a coffee with a friend or just go to a shop, are now forced to get into a car to make the trip.

Demolition Is The Only Answer

It may be a wonderful example of 1930s creative concrete construction, but for the modern age, it is complete crap!

Te station needs to be demolished and either confined to the landfill of history or turned into building blocks or other useful product.

Replacement With A Modern Bridge

The objective would be to provide a bridge, that gave step-free access to

  • Station Approach on the Western side.
  • The island platform.
  • Stoneleigh Broadway on the Eastern side.

This Google Map shows an aerial view of the station.

Note the number of useful places on either side of the railway.

There is also a lot of space on either side of the railway.

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

So could a factory-built bridge like this be installed be installed at Stoneleigh station?

Consider.

  • The bridge has been designed so it can built as a double span, so ir could serve both sides of the railway and the platform.
  • The steps at the end can even be turned through ninety degrees, so that they lead into the Broadway and Approach.
  • To create space, the life expired wooden buildings on the platform, that seem to be only held up, by courtesy of the woodworm holding hands, would need to be demolished.

This would allow, the new bridge to be built before closing the current monstrosity.

The station would be completed by providing a modern building on the platform, with staff and passenger facilities, that were appropriate to the million-plus passengers, who use the station every year.

Once the station is fully working, the 1930s station would be demolished.

Conclusion

Using Network Rail’s new footbridge design, a modern station could be created without closing the station to passengers and/or trains.

Stoneleigh could get a step-free modernstation i a matter of months, after planning permission was obtained.

In Syon Lane Station To Go Step-Free, I describe how Syon Lane station is getting a step-free bridge in five months.

 

 

 

May 8, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

Leatherhead Station To Go Step-Free

This document on the Government web site is entitled Access for All: 73 Stations Set To Benefit From Additional Funding.

Leatherhead station is on the list.

These pictures show the station and the current subway,

This is one of those stations, where lifts could probably be put into the subway.

But this would probably mean closing the subway, which is the main access between the platforms.

Look at this Google Map of the Northern end of the station.

The map illustrates another problem. There is car parking by the London-bound platform and commuters will need to cross the tracks.

But the map does show there is a lot of space and a step-free bridge might be possible at this end of the station.

In Winner Announced In The Network Rail Footbridge Design Ideas Competition, I wrote how the competition was won by this bridge.

So could a factory-built bridge like this be installed be installed at Leatherhead station?

May 7, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Example Cost And Timescale For A Step-Free Footbridge

This article on Network Rail’s web site is entitled Investment In West Calder Gives Station Accessibility A Lift.

The project replaced an existing bridge.

  • It cost £2.7 million.
  • It took ten months to build and commission.
  • Station access was maintained at all times.

It looks to have been a well-managed project.

This picture shows the bridge.

How would it compare with the recent winner of Network Rail’s competition to find a new footbridge design?

Having not seen either bridge in the metal, I’ll give my judgement when I have.

May 1, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment