When the Government announced the proposed design for the partial redevelopment of Euston yesterday to fit in HS2, no doubt they were hoping that a bit of pre-announcement spin would get some good coverage before next week’s AP3 announcement.
Alas for them, it didn’t happen, with the proposed design being compared to everything from a Pringle to a diseased toenail.
What’s more, many papers have picked up that this set of plans will add seven years to the previous plans: even Rupert Walker, Euston Development Director, HS2 Ltd said in a glossy video that the 17 year rebuild is just the “opportunity to begin the redevelopment”.
There are no plans, no funding and no timescale for improving the rest of the station, in spite of a £2.250 billion budget for the HS2 part. Nor does that eye-watering amount include costs of land purchase and reparation. (Last year, the Euston plans were supposed to be about £1.2billion.)
Financial Times: HS2 Euston development extended by 7 years
But critics condemned the new plan for failing to integrate Network Rail’s redevelopment of existing services at Euston or the proposed Crossrail 2 railway line, which would be needed to handle the extra passenger traffic generated by HS2.
Walker confirmed that the plans finally ruled out any possible link between HS2 and HS1, the high-speed train line to Paris which starts at nearby St Pancras. A mooted travelator appears off the cards for now: instead, Walker said the new station layout, merging with Euston Square underground station, would allow passengers with heavy luggage to take the Circle line for one stop to change to trains to Europe.
- Work for HS2 railway line at Euston station to last up to seven years longer
- It will also cost £250m more said firm responsible for high-speed network
Camden New Journal: HS2 Euston station design proposals revealed
…Mr Walker emphasised today: “HS2 is not funded to fund the entire rebuild of Euston Station.”
He said that Network Rail, which owns the station, was working behind closed doors on its own proposals to redevelop the rest of Euston Station that is not being redeveloped by HS2.
There were no details of what those plans would be or evidence that any serious work had been done by Network Rail…
Engineering and Technology Magazine: Euston station revamp completion date pushed to 2033
The building work, which is set to begin in 2017, was due to be completed by 2026. HS2 Ltd now plans to continue the work until 2033.
It wants to build six platforms and a concourse to the west of the existing station by 2026 to support the first phase of HS2 between London and the Midlands.
In a change from proposals initially submitted two years ago, HS2 Ltd is planning to delay construction of five further high-speed platforms within the existing station. They would be ready for phase two of HS2 which will run from the capital to Leeds and Manchester in 2033.
The new proposal would see the 5 platforms for the second phase delayed and completed in 2033, rather than 2026.
Camden Council has warned that HS2 Ltd’s plans for Euston Station will bring “more than a decade of blight without any benefit” to London, unless there is a commitment to the redevelopment of the entire station.
The Council feels questions have been left unanswered on how the likes of Crossrail 2 will be integrated into the station as there is no commitment to comprehensive development of the station.
Construction News: The waiting game
First it was HS2. Or at least that’s what some are predicting.
The project, which is expected to begin main line construction in 2018, had to bat off fears of a tardy start after the CPA forecasted that the main civils work wouldn’t start until at least 2020.
The Londonist: New Plans For Euston High-Speed Station Revealed
The revised proposal does not include:
- Comprehensive redevelopment of the existing, and somewhat dated, Euston station.
- Any mention of rebuilding the Euston Arch. (Not that everyone wants it.)
Rail Technology Magazine warning in August: Euston HS2 rebuild must go better than London Bridge, NR admits
A final thought from VoxOpp on Twitter:
— VoxOpp (@VoxOpp) September 8, 2015