Two major new housing communities will be built in London alongside new railway stations, the government has announced.
The larger investment will see £320 million being spent on a new Brent Cross West Thameslink station which will lead to a new community of 7,500 properties being built. This is in addition to the £97m grant awarded in the 2016 budget bringing total government investment £416.5 million.
The new station is planned to be on the current Cricklewood maintenance depot which is used by East Midlands Trains and Thameslink. The depot would be moved slightly south onto a bigger site.
Under the proposal for the North and West London Railway, Brent Cross Thameslink station could also be an interchange with services to Harlesden and potentially also towards Brent Cross tube station.
Work has already begun on site with associated rail works and the council is currently undertaking a procurement competition to appoint a contractor in Autumn 2019 to construct the station. The new station is due to open in 2022.
It’s currently expected that the station will have a peak service of eight trains per hour and an off peak service of four trains per hour. That may be changed as the Thameslink operator franchise is up for renewal in 2021, and while the replacement operator will be required to serve the station, at this stage it’s too early to say how many trains will actually call there.
The plans will also see a new public bridge over the railway tracks to the south of the station, which will be useful as the railway is currently a solid barrier all the way from Cricklewood up to Staples Corner. Alongside the new homes, there will be new offices and an extension to the Brent Cross shopping centre.
The £320 million grant will be partially repayable from the growth in business rates from the expansion of Brent Cross Shopping Centre and the council’s profits from the Brent Cross South scheme. The council will then in turn benefit from the business rates generated from Brent Cross South.
The government will also be providing £250 million so up to 13,000 new homes can be built close to the new HS2 railway station at Old Oak Common.