Stratford station in East London is bursting at the seams, even today, and thanks to a varied history of development is a miss mash of layouts that add to the problems coping with its crowds.

There are now tentative, multi-decade long plans to improve the station and the public spaces around it.

Early proposal – not finalised (c) 5th Studio

The London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), the regeneration agency responsible for Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, is leading on the plans as part of its work alongside Network Rail, Newham Council, and TfL, and agency, 5th Studio is leading on the design concepts.

Apart from the station itself, there’s the problem that the wide railway tracks slice the town into two halves and make crossing between the older Stratford town centre and the newer Olympic park areas quite difficult.

The proposals being consulted on at the moment are at an exceptionally early stage, and are more about gathering ideas for improvements than putting forward concrete suggestions. The scale of transformation needed has been previously described as being “similar to what has been seen at Kings Cross and London Bridge”.

They’re suggesting a new bridge to run over the railway tracks, more retail spaces (in a part of town not exactly lacking them already), more pedestrian spaces and without specifying how, high-class bus and train stations.

To help pay for it, expect up to 2,000 new homes to be built – and the indicative images suggest that several of the blocks will be above a rebuilt Stratford station.

Although there are no plans yet, and certainly no money either for a rebuilding of Stratford station, there is funding for the consultation and planning work for an outline business case to be used to seek the money for the station redevelopment.

It’s likely that whatever is decided on will be delivered in phases, with the station rebuild coming later in the scheme.

In the interim, there’s still the planned side entrance linking the station to Carpenters Estate which has been funded and is supported in the consultation documents. That could be the first to be delivered out of a decade-long project to improve Stratford station.

The consultation documents are here.


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  1. MPW says:

    Only slightly related to this topic, I would love to see an express bus network centred on Stratford with its massive rail connections and nearby A12. If connecting via Silvertown tunnel and given proper prioritisation it could transform connections across the Thames without needing the cost of massive rail projects. That would surely make up for the environmental cost of the new tunnel.

  2. John Haines says:

    I was Lead Structural Engineer and Design Manager for the Stratford Station scheme that opened in 1999 and also worked on London Bridge Redevelopment. Comparisons between the two are misleading, every track at London Bridge was relaid and a new concourse formed below them. This does not appear to be proposed at Stratford, indeed it would be massively disruptive, and the Central Line is a major constraint.
    Having said that, yes, Stratford is a mess, but that is primarily because of the network of access passages to the platforms, which were increased from the 1999 scheme for the Olympics.
    If you can’t go below, then above would be possible, but I see no sign of that.
    So, this appears to be mainly about regeneration of the area and more retail space rather than a massive simplification of the station as at London Bridge.

  3. Iain Scotchman says:

    Is the new side entrance going ahead, as the PP stated it had to be started by Sept. 2019?

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