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CABE support for Crossrail at Paddington - CABE release

CABE's Crossrail design review panel has given its support to Weston Williamson's designs for the Paddington Integrated Project. When complete it will create a much improved experience for passengers using the Hammersmith & City underground line.

The taxi rank, currently on Departures Road, will be moved to allow the development of a new concourse for Crossrail. The new taxi facilities will include a ramp off Bishops Bridge Road, which will eventually be incorporated into a commercial over site development. Whilst the cladding of this ramp is intended to be temporary, it may be in place for some time, because there are no fixed timings on the commercial development. Therefore, the panel advised Crossrail to rethink the proposed industrial-looking perforated metal cladding.

The panel urged Crossrail to involve artists at an early stage, in particular, to work with the architects on the design of decorative glazing proposed for the Hammersmith & City line concourse. This could add to the distinctive character of the station while also helping people to find their way around.

Deborah Denner, Senior design review advisor, comments: "Paddington is a good example of the way many Crossrail stations need to be knitted into sensitive historic contexts. We've been working with Crossrail over the past year, advising on these projects through a dedicated design review panel, and we're pleased to be able to support this scheme for planning approval."

This current application does not include the design of the concourse to the south of Paddington station. Other developments are also being considered and the panel expressed its concern that designs should not be developed in a 'piecemeal manner.' Network Rail intend to lead in developing the masterplan for the whole station - along with Crossrail, London Underground, English Heritage and Westminster City Council - and the panel has stressed that this important work must begin soon.

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Notes to Editors

  • CABE's full comments on the Paddington Integrated Project are available online at
  • Please get in touch with Jane Barraclough, senior press officer, or 020 7070 6771 for more information or to request images.
  • CABE's Crossrail design review panel is reviewing seven stations. Paddington is the third station that CABE's Crossrail panel has reviewed and that is in the public domain. The others are Farringdon and Tottenham Court Road. The other four are: Bond Street, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel and Custom House.
  • The panel will assess the designs for those parts of the development requiring consent from the relevant planning authority. These include the exterior of station buildings, entrances and ticket halls, and what will be built above the stations. The panel will look at issues such as aesthetic quality, how the building relates to its surroundings, quality of materials, inclusiveness and accessibility.
  • CABE is the government's advisor on architecture, urban design and public space. As a public body, we encourage policymakers to create places that work for people. We help local planners apply national design policy and offer expert advice to developers and architects. We show public sector clients how to commission buildings that meet the needs of their users. And we seek to inspire the public to demand more from their buildings and spaces. Advising, influencing and inspiring, we work to create well-designed, welcoming places.
  • CABE's design review is a free advice service, offering expert independent assessments of schemes that will have a significant impact on their environment.