Images of what will eventually be one of the best interconnected railway hubs in South-East England have been released.
The new station will link HS2 with the Elizabeth line and National Rail services to the West Country/Paddington, is close to two planned new London Overground stations, and includes provision in the future for a link to Chiltern Railways via the Acton – Northolt line
The new images were released as part of the planning application that’s been submitted to the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC) and is based on consultations that took place last year after initial images were released of the proposed station.
Designs for the station show that the six HS2 platforms will be situated underground with an integrated connection to the adjoining conventional station with its 8 platforms at ground level via a shared overbridge. A concourse will link both halves of the station, covered by a vast roof, which will be covered in solar cells to generate electricity for the station.
The six 450m HS2 platforms will be built in an 850m long underground box, with twin tunnels taking high speed trains east to the (proposed) terminus at Euston and west to the outskirts of London. One of the design comments in the planning application confirmed that the high-speed platforms will incorporate platform edge protection (PEP) – similar to the Jubilee and Elizabeth lines.
To the west of the station, above the HS2 platforms, there will be a new public park, a green space which will welcome visitors to Old Oak Common and provide a new focal point for the growing community. The submission also includes an application to lower and widen Old Oak Common Lane, which will improve access to the station for buses and pedestrians.
The station design development has been led by engineering professional services consultancy WSP, and architects WilkinsonEyre.
Work at Old Oak Common to prepare for construction of the station has been ongoing since 2017 and the site is near ready to be handed over to HS2’s station construction partner at Old Oak Common, Balfour Beatty Vinci Systra JV (BBVS) who were awarded the contract last September.
HS2’s Enabling Works Contractor, Costain Skanska JV (CSJV) have to date made considerable progress on the site, clearing 32,000 cubic meters of former rail depot sheds and outbuildings, working through 105,000 cubic meters of earth to clear the site and remove any contamination built up over a century of continuous railway use.
Trawling through the planning application paperwork, one of the sentences that caught my attention is that the public seating areas will include charging points for electric wheelchairs, which candidly, is not an issue I had ever considered.
The station will also include a quiet / sensory room for people with autism, dementia or other cognitive needs, and in addition to the conventional toilets, two specifically designated gender neutral toilets.
They’re also building in some flexibility into the design to adapt for changing use, especially as the Old Oak Common area is developed, so some of the planned retail units can be removed to provide a new bridge from the station to the OPDC area.
The planning application will now be considered by OPDC and a decision is expected by Summer 2020.