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£26m Rochester station plans published

Plans have been revealed for a new £26m rail station in Rochester, replacing the existing building with one with better facilities and to provide increased capacity on the network.

The station is planned for land at Corporation Street and Network Rail is set to submit a formal planning application to Medway Council this spring. The new station will include three platforms able to accommodate 12-carriage trains, accessible toilets with baby changing facilities, cycle racks and retail.

Step-free access will also be provided and station car parking will be improved. The work is due for completion in winter 2015 and the station will be operated by Southeastern.

Fiona Taylor, Network Rail’s route managing director for Kent, said: “The proposed new station will deliver a huge boost to Rochester and Medway. It will provide passengers with improved facilities and give better access to the town centre and surrounding area.

“The new station will be able to accommodate longer trains than the current station, helping boost capacity and providing more seats for passengers. An integrated transport hub will provide better links to other types of public transport.

“The development will also help kick-start the wider regeneration of the Riverside area, which is an important part of the development of Rochester. These public information events at the station and council offices are an opportunity to find out more about the proposals before a formal planning application is submitted to Medway Council later this year.”

Cllr Rodney Chambers, Medway Council leader and regeneration lead, said: “If this proposal gets the go-ahead it will lead to a new, better train station for Rochester, which will result in a quicker, more reliable service with more space for passengers.

“The number of rail passengers is forecast to grow significantly and freeing up this space for a new station will not only improve the service for commuters and other passengers, but also make sure it grows with future demand.

“It would also result in the train station moving closer to the centre of Rochester, and the places that visitors come to, and give local people a newer, better station that is easier to get to and has better links with local bus services.”

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