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Crossrail unveils new Whitechapel station design

Special exhibition unveils new images at Idea Store, Whitechapel Road on 30 June 2010

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A new improved design for Whitechapel Station was made public by Crossrail today.

The new plan includes a whole host of upgrades which will benefit passengers and local residents whilst delivering substantial savings compared to the original proposal.

The new images show the design keeps a direct entrance on Whitechapel Road. The new approach dramatically reduces the amount of excavation building work needed meaning less inconvenience for local residents while the work is going on.

Working with architects BDP and Hyder Consulting, Crossrail has listened to feedback from local residents and the local authority, Tower Hamlets, and included ideas and comments from that in the new plans. The new designs also offer better value for money.

When Crossrail opens in 2017, Whitechapel station will become an important transport hub connecting the new line to the District and Hammersmith & City lines as well as the new London Overground line.

BDP and Hyder's designs will incorporate natural light, improving the passenger experience while enhancing the historic features of the old station. The architects have made best use of the unique personality of the existing station and introduced easy, step-free access to the reinstated entrance on Whitechapel Road as well as to the Royal London Hospital on the other side of the road.

The new plans are accessible and safer for pedestrians, with a spectacular walkway alongside the concourse which provides a free pedestrian route from Durward Street on to Whitechapel Road for local residents.

The access and ventilation shafts around Whitechapel station have also been re-designed to minimise impact on local residents. The height of Cambridge Heath Road shaft is now reduced and the Durward Street shaft has been split into two structures to have ventilation facing inwards away from the surrounding structures, which include a school.

Owen Whalley, Head of Planning and Building Control, London Borough of Tower Hamlets said:

"The Council welcomes Crossrail's positive response to our concerns about the original station design proposals which had a main entrance on Fulbourne Street. The new station, with its entrance on Whitechapel Road, is a great improvement. It will benefit passengers using the station as well as local residents who will be able to use the new footpath connecting Durward Street and Whitechapel Road."

Rob Holden, Crossrail Chief Executive, said:

"Crossrail is sensitive to local issues and I am delighted that our discussions with Tower Hamlets and the local community have resulted in such an exciting new station design. The new Whitechapel station is something of which the local community can be proud. Crossrail and its partners are committed to delivering this crucial railway while ensuring value for money at every step."

Kulveer Ranger, the Mayor of London's transport adviser, said:

"Crossrail is crucial to the regeneration of East London. This development is about investing in a great design which reflects the views of local residents at the best value for money. I am delighted to see the plans coming together for a truly exciting development."

Local residents and businesses will have a chance to inspect the improved designs for Crossrail Whitechapel station, including a 3D model, at a special exhibition at Crossrail's new Visitor Information Centre at the Idea Store in Whitechapel on June 30, July 1 and July 3. Crossrail staff will be on hand to discuss the proposals.


For further information contact Ankeeta Munsi
Crossrail Press Office
Tel 020 3229 9552 or email: [email protected]

Notes to Editors

The new designs for Whitechapel Crossrail station can be viewed at the Crossrail Visitor Information Centre at the Idea Store on Whitechapel Road, E1 1BU on the 30 June, 1 July (12-8pm) & 3 July (10-4pm) where information, visuals and a 3D model will be available for people to view. High resolution images are available to journalists upon request at the press office.

In April 2009, Crossrail announced that it had reached agreement with the London Fire Brigade to remove eight proposed permanent access and ventilation shafts from the central tunnelled section of the Crossrail scheme. This decision particularly benefitted communities in east London where four of the permanent shafts were due to be located. The removal of these shafts meant the elimination of construction works impacts, including lorry journeys in these areas. In addition a number of properties in Hanbury Street, east London, were no longer required to be compulsorily purchased and demolished.

The four shafts removed from the Crossrail scheme in east London were: Hanbury Street E1, Lovell Street E14, Hertsmere Road E14 and Blackwall Way E14.

Earlier this year Crossrail revised the construction arrangements for the works proposed at Stepney Green, This has removed the need to use the all-weather pitch as part of the construction site, removing the impact of suspending the use of the pitch while it was moved and of the temporary reduction in the public space on the Green.

Crossrail Progress

The Crossrail Act received Royal Assent on 22 July 2008, granting the powers to build the railway. Crossrail construction began on 15 May 2009 with work commencing at the new Crossrail Canary Wharf station.

The main construction programme begins along the whole route this year.
Crossrail is progressing rapidly, recent milestones include:

Preparatory works underway at all central Crossrail stations on the route.

Procurement for main tunnelling contracts well underway.

Crossrail Visitor Information Centres opened at Tottenham Court Road and Whitechapel.

Site at Aldersbrook in Newham acquired for Underground Construction and Tunnelling Academy.

Government confirms that the route from Maidenhead to Reading and from Abbey Wood to Hoo Junction in Kent have been safeguarded to allow a potential future extension of Crossrail.

About Crossrail

Crossrail will run 118 km from Maidenhead and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km tunnels under central London to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east. It will bring an additional 1.5 million people within 60 minutes commuting distance of London's key business districts. When Crossrail opens in 2017 it will increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10 per cent, supporting regeneration across the capital, helping to secure London's position as a world leading financial centre, and cutting journey times across the city.

Crossrail will deliver substantial economic benefits for all of London and the South East after the new railway opens in 2017. A study published in February 2009 assessed the key benefits including faster journey times, reduced and public transport congestions, improved productivity and higher earnings. When the results are modelled for just one year - 2026 - the annual economic benefit across all of London's boroughs is estimated at £1.24bn at 2008 prices.

Up to 14,000 people will be employed at the peak of construction in 2013/2015, with an estimated further 7000 jobs created indirectly. Crossrail is Europe's largest construction project.

Preparatory works took place throughout 2009. The main construction programming starts in 2010 with tunnelling starting in 2011. Crossrail is scheduled to open for service in 2017.

Crossrail is being delivered by Crossrail Limited (CRL). CRL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London.

Crossrail is jointly sponsored by Department for Transport and Transport for London.