Platform alteration - New Street redevelopment update

There are six months to go until the radical transformation of New Street Station will be part revealed with the opening of the western half of the concourse and closure of existing entrances to allow the eastern half to be transformed.  Over 1000 construction workers are currently working on the redevelopment with the refurbishment of one platform at a time allowing train services to run uninterrupted.

The new concourse will also see a bigger and improved ticket office, new escalators up to the Pallasades shopping centre replacing the existing ones and improved access to every platform, vehicle traffic moving from Smallbrook Queensway to Hill Street and the closure of the Navigation Street footbridge at the west end of the station temporarily and the opening of new entrances onto Stephenson Street and Hill Street.

Alongside the new entrances and new concourse the new Moor Street Link, the pedestrian route running adjacent to the rear of the Odeon Cinema will open in April 2013 providing a link between Moor Street Station and the new concourse via Stephenson Street.  The steelwork for the new route has been completed and concrete for the new link laid.

The first sections of the stainless steel facade will be installed later this year above Stephenson Street on the north side of the station and will give the first glimpse into the shiny new station.

The new concourse and the entrances also come ahead of the redevelopment of the Pallasades Shopping Centre which it was announced in September, Grand Central New York-style revamp for Pallasades shopping centre,  will be renamed to Grand Central Birmingham.  The rename and rebrand comes amongst the anchoring of John Lewis to the new centre and should bring an exciting retail opportunity for retailers not already in the city and with a busy shopping centre below;  Network Rail suggests the centre should attract 50 million visitors a year,  The increase in entrances to the station will mean the station and shopping centre can co-exist semi-indepedently.

The 250,000 sq ft John Lewis store is being complemented by an additional 200,000 sq ft of retail space for over 50 fashion and lifestyle stores.Keith Stone, leasing director for Grand Central, said: “Birmingham doesn’t currently have a centrally-located shopping destination for premium fashion brands. Grand Central will now fulfil this demand.”

Indicative images of the new Grand Central Birmingham are shown below.

What is more concerning is the threat this poses to independent retailers who are already struggling in the city and the pull effect this may have towards the Bullring.  The retail centre of gravity was moved to the Bullring following it's opening nearly ten years ago in 2003 and the new John Lewis and retail units will centre the Bullring and Grand Central squarely as the heart of the city.

The station redevelopment should transform the city in a meaningful way and change attitudes in the same vein as the Bullring's 2003 opening but there needs to now be a real focus on the independents and quarters for these that can anchor other areas of the city and encourage visitors to step out of the comfort and weather proof hub of the Bullring and former Pallasades Shopping Centre, Grand Central. 

More information on the concourse switchover will be made available in January 2013 with a public information campaign ahead of the April's changes.

The following information is from a report going to the City Council Cabinet on 29 October, New Street Gateway Update, which provides an update on progress since the last report to Cabinet of 18 April 2011.

• The demolition of Stephenson Tower as part of the preparation of the Southside site for the delivery of the John Lewis store and refurbishment of the Pallasades has now been completed and work on the foundations and lift cores in the Southside site to construct the new John Lewis store that is scheduled to open in 2015 have commenced;

• Preparatory works have commenced within the Pallasades in readiness for the construction of the new atrium roof later in this year. Strip out works are well advanced in preparation for the reconfiguration of the new shopping centre.

• Erection of the steelwork structure to carry the new Moor Street link bridge is now complete and on target to open in open in April 2013 when it will provide a new pedestrian route between Moor Street station, Stephenson Street and the new western concourse;

• Works to re-model the western half of the new station concourse is well underway and on target to meet the timeline which will see the new western concourse open in April 2013. The switch over to this new concourse will allow the existing station to be rebuilt without disrupting services to passengers.

• Steelwork to the north west corner is progressing well in readiness for the new stainless steel cladding to be fixed - Over the next few months, the grey, concrete station building above Stephenson Street will be transformed as it becomes the first section to be clad in the reflective stainless steel fa├žade which will become the major architectural feature of New Street station;

• Alongside the activity inside of the station, outside on Stephenson Street, the new North West entrance to the station has taken shape rapidly over the summer. This new entrance  will open in April 2013 and will provide direct access into the new western concourse.

The first phase of the platform refurbishment programme is due to be completed in Spring 2013 and will result in enhanced facilities within the western half of the station concourse for passengers. Upon completion of phase one, phase two which covers the eastern half of the station concourse will commence; This second phase will lead to the overall completion of the works by 2015.

Throughout these works the station is continuing to operate as a ‘live site’ plans are in place to ensure that disruption to commuters is kept to a minimum.The programme of re-development works also incorporate the demolition of the existing NCP car park and replacement with a new multi-storey car park with an increased capacity.New Street Gateway Update

Network Rail has produced a fascinating series of pictures, reproduced below from,-present--future.aspx, which shows in reverse to recent updates the construction of the 1960s station and also show the works to the station and the scale of the engineering and construction task as it goes through it's most radical transformation since the 1960s redevelopment.

The following pictures I have taken show progress since my last update on the redevelopment from August 26, New Street Station Redevelopment - August update II, with the first of four cores for lifts and other services completed and work now starting on the goods lift core adjacent to this first completed core.  Work has also moved on with the preparation for the new plaza fronting the station opposite the Bullring.

7 September

15 September

6 October - new concourse above from platform level.

11 October

14 October

17 October

20 October

25 October


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