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First Crossrail public realm improvements delivered

First Crossrail public realm improvements delivered
  • New canal-side plaza revealed in Paddington station face lift
  • Paddington is the first station to benefit from the project to improve public space around Crossrail stations

Crossrail has lifted the veil on the first of the public realm improvements that major stations across the new transport route will experience as a result of  investment into improving the public spaces around the new stations.

The first station to experience the transformation is Paddington with Crossrail taking down worksite walls around the new entrance to London Underground’s Hammersmith & City line. It provides Londoners with a first look at how the public space around the stations will be transformed as a result of Crossrail.

Crossrail began the upgrade to the Paddington station taxi rank and entrance to the Hammersmith & City line in 2010 ahead of starting works on its new station on Eastbourne Terrace.

A new canal-side plaza has been revealed next to the Grand Union Canal, along with new paths, green spaces, seating and bicycle parking, transforming the area into a vibrant location.

Crossrail Chief Executive Andrew Wolstenholme said: “Crossrail is not just delivering a new railway, but is working closely with local councils and Transport for London to transform the areas around stations. This will deliver new squares, footpaths, lighting and green spaces and provide improved passenger access to stations. Paddington has provided an advance look at how Crossrail will transform areas into vibrant, enjoyable and functional locations.”

Kay Buxton, Chief Executive, Paddington Waterside Partnership, said: “The opening up of the canalside plaza by Crossrail provides much improved pedestrian access to the Grand Union Canal and a spectacular waterside public realm treatment. This high quality scheme complements the rich heritage of its setting and delivers the desired integration with neighbouring development schemes at Paddington, including Merchant Square, North Wharf Road and Paddington Central.”

Further regeneration will be delivered to Paddington in the form of new office and retail space. Crossrail has proposed a 320,000 sq ft development located at the junction of Bishop’s Bridge Road, above the new entrance to the Hammersmith & City line on the Grand Union Canal. If approved, the development will comprise of 15 storeys of high-quality office space with the retail and office entrance at canal level. The development is part of the three million square feet of new high quality office, retail and residential space planned at 12 locations around the new Crossrail stations.




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Notes to editors

An ambitious programme of public realm improvements is planned in and around Crossrail’s new stations at an estimated cost of £90 million. Crossrail is contributing £28 million with Transport for London providing a further £30 million and the remainder funded by local authorities and industry partners.

The public realm investment will deliver:

  • 92,000 square metres of improved public space outside the new Crossrail stations in central London – the equivalent of four Trafalgar Squares – providing clutter-free public areas, wider pavements, new pedestrianised areas and improved safer traffic management outside of stations.
  • Improved public areas designed to work better with the local streets and buildings, stimulating future development and regeneration around Crossrail stations
  • New trees planted, along with new seating areas and meeting places
  • Improved connections with buses, taxis, cycle parking, and walking routes with improved signage and way-finding

Upgrades to Paddington station

Among the works completed at Paddington were:

  • A new Hammersmith & City line station to ease over-crowding and provide space for future growth in passenger numbers, enhanced quality of access, interchange and ambience.
  • An improved new pedestrian entrance from the canal towpath to both Paddington mainline station and the new Hammersmith & City line station.
  • A new taxi access ramp from Bishop’s Bridge Road.
  • Provision for a future commercial development above the new Hammersmith & City line station and the site adjacent to the existing canal towpath.

About Crossrail

The total funding envelope available to deliver Crossrail is £14.8bn. The Crossrail route will pass through 37 stations and run 118 km (73 miles) from Maidenhead and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km (13 miles) tunnels to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.

When Crossrail opens it will increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10%, supporting regeneration and cutting journey times across the city. Crossrail services are due to commence through central London in 2018.

Crossrail is being delivered by Crossrail Limited (CRL). CRL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London. Crossrail is jointly sponsored by the Department for Transport and Transport for London.