Ten years after a previous attempt to rebuild Camden Town tube station were thrown out, London Underground is back with a new scheme.
Back in 2005, TfL had proposed the demolition of the current building, and behind it, also sweep away Camden Market, a church, and the Electric Ballroom. Much of the triangle that the station sits on would have been swept away.
Unsurprisingly, the plans were controversial, and the local council refused to permit the redevelopment.
While the scale of the works at the surface was considerable, it would have seen a massive increase in capacity below ground as well, which is increasingly necessary as people switch between the two sides of the Northern Line.
Over the past decade, the overcrowding at the station has only got worse, with the station being one-way traffic at weekends now to cope with the crowds.
TfL is back, with a much smaller proposal.
Originally suggested back in 2013, with an estimated cost of around £200 million, TfL has now fleshed out the details.
Below ground, the two small cross passages between the two arms of the Northern Line will be joined by two more much larger tunnels. These will be needed not just to help people get out of the station but as an interchange for the long anticipated splitting of the Northern Line into two separate services.
In addition, a new second entrance will be built at the rear of the station, no longer taking over Camden Market, but on a site on the other side of the road.
The site for the new entrance is currently occupied by Hawley School, but it already has plans to move to a new site in the Hawley Wharf redevelopment, leaving the plot of land ripe for TfL to turn into a tube station entrance.
It happens to be almost opposite an entrance to the old WW2 era deep level shelters, whose location may prove useful as storage for the construction works (as at Old Street in the 1990s), or a massive hindrance.
The deep level tunnels also run some distance to the north and south of the new station entrance, and access to them (possibly via the shaft behind M&S) may offer a way of accessing the building site from below while minimising deliveries along the narrow congested street the new ticket hall will sit on.
Whatever the construction plans and design of the new entrance ends up as, there will be quite a wait, as work is not expected to start until 2019 and the new entrance wont open until 2023/4.
There will be a public exhibition at the Trinity United Reformed Church, Buck Street, Camden Town NW1 8NJ
- Weds 21 & Thurs 22 October 2015 12:00 to 20:00
- Saturday 24 October 2015 11:00 to 16:00
That construction work however also coincides with upgrade works at Bank Station which will see part of the Northern Line suspended for two months along the Bank branch. A year later, it’s expected that the Battersea extension will open.
A separate consultation may also take place later to consider redevelopment above the existing tube station entrance.