Final Countdown - new New Street Station arrives
In under twelve hours the long wait for the redevelopment of New Street Station will be over - well almost - with the keys to the station handed over to the station manager at 7.30am, http://www.itv.com/news/central/update/2015-09-19/final-preparations-for-birmingham-new-street-opening/. The reason I say almost is that platform redevelopment works will still take another year.
Tonight will see 450 workers carry out final touches to the station and finish removing 500 tonnes of hoarding.
As well as the physical transformation, the scale of the redevelopment has been amazing. While 170,000 passengers have been using the station daily construction on the £750m project has taken place while keeping the station in operation. Amazingly a train leaves the station every 37 seconds.
Friday 18th saw a VIP celebration ahead of the opening for passengers tomorrow and ahead of Grand Central's opening on Thursday 24 September. Network Rail are rightly proud of the development with passenger capacity increased to cope with 300,000 passengers and the station becoming a retail destination itself along its partner, Grand Central Shopping Centre.
Network Rail now hopes that the station will become a retail destination in its own right, helping to revive the local area in the way that St Pancras has in London, with 43 shops in New Street as well as Grand Central and a 250,000 sq ft John Lewis store built alongside.http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/sep/18/birmingham-new-street-station-unveils-makeover
The scale of the new atrium is vast - five times that of Euston Station - and some of the facts surround it's construction mind boggling.
Birmingham New Street in numbers:
4 train operating companies run through the station
5 times more space at concourse level
5 times the size of London Euston’s concourse
7 days a week working on site, 24 hours a day
12 platforms will be refurbished
13 Centre Courts at Wimbledon – size of the entire new passenger concourse
15 new lifts, serving every platform
36 escalators, serving every platform
37 a train arrives or departs Birmingham New Street every 37 seconds
50 lifestyle and premium fashion brands in Grand Central
60 pupils from local primary school toured station
60 % rain water harvested from the façade used to flush all the toilets in the station
85 % of non-hazardous waste material from the whole project to be recycled /re-used as a minimum
1,000 jobs created through John Lewis and Grand Central
1,200 workers on average on site increasing to 3,500 at the end
1854 original station first opened
1967 redeveloped station opened
2009 work began on the new station
2015 overall project completion
3,300 square metres of new atrium, the size of a football pitch
5,000 tonnes of concrete removed from the old NCP car park to create the first half of the new concourse
7,000 tonnes of concrete removed from Stephenson Tower
10,000 lorry journeys saved off Birmingham’s roads throughout the project by using trains to transport waste material
20,000 tonnes of concrete removed to create the space for the atrium
170,000 passengers use the station daily
300,000 passenger-per-day capacity of the new Birmingham New Street station
200,000 sq ft of retail space in Grand Central
250,000 sq ft of space in John Lewis
BNS construction facts & figures:
- 7,500 tonnes from the old car park to create the space for the atrium
- 20,000 tonnes from Stephenson Tower, an old 22-storey tower block
- 20,000 tonnes from the centre of the Pallasades shopping centre to create the space for the new atrium.
To build the new John Lewis shop:
The following images, reproduced from Network Rail (http://www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk/news/final-countdown-to-birmingham-new-street-stations-big-unveil), show the final days of work to finish the station concourse and the amazing atrium that will transform both the station and the city.
The video below, reproduced from Network Rail (http://www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk/news/final-countdown-to-birmingham-new-street-stations-big-unveil), shows five years in five minutes and reveals the scale of the work that has taken place.
The excitement in Birmingham tonight is palpable and after years of waiting I think most will agree it will have been worth the wait and that there should be a massive thank you to everyone who has worked so hard on what will surely be recorded as a feat of project management, construction and regeneration.
Three cheers for everyone who has worked tirelessly on something very special for Birmingham.