The Birmingham City Council has officially granted Schedule 17 approval under the HS2 Phase One Act 2017, giving the green light for the development of HS2’s Washwood Heath Depot, situated in the north-east of Birmingham city centre.
This site will be the hub for HS2’s train maintenance, servicing, and storage through the collation of a Maintenance Building, Network Integrated Control Centre (NICC) and Cleaners and Drivers Building. The infrastructures have been designed to celebrate engineering and provide sustainable working, as well as outdoor amenity spaces for staff.
Richard Kirkham, HS2’s Light Systems Programme Client said:
“We’re pleased that Birmingham City Council’s planning committee has approved our plans for the HS2 depot at Washwood Heath, marking a significant milestone for HS2 in the Midlands.
“Over 550 jobs will be created by the Depot’s operations in a range of disciplines including facilities management, fleet management, production, depot drivers and cleaning. We’re working closely with Birmingham City Council and other stakeholders to maximise these job opportunities for people in the local area.”
The Maintenance building will represent the primary hub of operations throughout the site, being utilised for the upkeep of HS2’s fleet of trains, accompanied with facilities to store materials and equipment. This will see the inclusion of office accommodation, workshops and staff welfare facilities, housing up to 250 members of staff, including facilities management, fleet management, production, cleaning, and depot drivers.
The allocated building for Cleaners and Drivers is located in the depot’s western area, boasting 200 members of staff, whilst host facilities for train servicing teams and driver training, with the building being linked to the stabling yard area, where trains will be cleaned and replenished. This yard will be located towards the west side of the depot site and will house the trains whilst they’re not in operation.
The building designs integrate key sustainability features such as unlocking a high level of controlled, natural lighting, thus eliminating the need large amounts artificial lighting during the daytime. Additional environmental benefits can be seen through the use of solar roof panels, reusing rainwater runoff from some of the building roofs, sustainable drainage, renewable energy and low carbon materials.
Kay Hughes, HS2’s Design Director said:
“Good functional design has been a vital part of developing the plans for the Depot, including ensuring this new large-scale facility contributes to improving a significant area on the outskirts of Birmingham, and streamlining operations for the railway.
“Our design team have worked closely with the Council to make sure we deliver the right design for the local area, which we can all be proud of.”
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