Plans to enlarge and upgrade Southall Station in Ealing as part of the Crossrail project have received the backing of Ealing Council. The local authority has backed the blueprint for a new steel and glass structure that will provide a new airy, light environment aimed at helping passengers feel more at home, with a new forecourt making access much easier.
Other plans involve the building of a new footbridge and installation of three lifts to help ensure step-free access to all platforms, longer platforms to accommodate the 200 metre-long Crossrail trains, plus extra signage, CCTV and lighting.
Crossrail Surface Director Matthew White commented: “The Crossrail improvements will transform the station and deliver a larger building that will serve local people for many decades to come. The designs show a bright, spacious structure that will be easier for passengers to get around and will provide a focal point for the local area.”
The leader of Ealing Council Julian Bell said the local authority has worked with Crossrail to ensure the new station layout is “innovative as well as being practical”, adding that it will help with the overall revitalisation of Ealing town centre.
Once building work is completed, the new station will be taken over by Crossrail to operate from the end of 2017, although the network will only become fully operational in 2019, with trains taking 17 minutes to get to Bond Street and 31 minutes to reach Canary Wharf.
Other stations where work is being prepared for Crossrail include Brentwood and Shenfield, which lie at either end of the route and will be among the first stations to be revamped. Attention has switched to the stations after the completion this month of the tunnelling required for the project, which involved 26 miles of new underground routes being dug.
The work has led to a number of archaeological finds, including evidence of Roman life in the City, as well as the Bedlam Hospital burial site by Liverpool Street.