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London station approaches completion

TfL is informing customers of the colossal progress made at the Bank Tube station upgrade as it announces the final phase of the work needed to finish the project.

200,000-tonnes of material have been excavated from under London, allowing a brand-new tunnel to be constructed for the Northern Line, alongside a range of improved customer routes through the station.

The final stages of the work will be completed during a 17-week closure of the Bank branch of the Northern line from 15 January until mid-May 2022.

The closure will let TfL finish the elaborate work required to connect the new tunnels to the existing railway. Other works include fitting out the new station, installing the final sections of track, completing work in the tunnels constructed during the project, and integrating all the new systems installed in the station.

It will also give London Underground staff some time to prepare to operate the new areas of the station safely.

Improvements will include a new station entrance providing direct access to the Northern line on Cannon Street, as well as a new circulating area to provide more space for customers underground and a new southbound Northern line platform.

Director of Major Projects for TfL, Stuart Harvey, said: "Bank station has a vital role to play in London's recovery from the pandemic. The changes to the station will transform the experience of every customer that uses Bank and will help the city as it continues to recover and people return to the area.

"I am proud of the work our staff, contractors and everyone associated with the project has put into this vital upgrade and I look forward to that work being complete next year, but I am sorry that this vital and complex work will cause disruption."

Before the pandemic, the connected Bank and Monument stations were the most bustling on the Tube network, as well as being one of the busiest in the UK. In total, over 120m commuters use the stations every year. The Northern line was also the busiest on the network with just over 1m customers using it each working day.

Throughout the closure of the Northern line, signalling equipment is set to be installed, and the new tunnels will be connected to the existing ones. Works will include breaking through the walls of the current southbound tunnel - below the northbound one - and connecting it to the newly excavated tunnel. A new track will then be laid, with signalling and control equipment to allow trains to use the new tunnel.

During these works, the current southbound running tunnel will be converted into a passenger concourse, with concrete poured into the track area and connected to the new tunnels via newly finished cross passageways. The tunnels excavated for construction will also be filled up.

The improvements at Bank will allow 40% more space inside the station, improved access to the DLR, and step-free access to the Northern line for the first time. Included will also be two moving walkways between the Northern line and Central lines, and escalators linking the new entrance to the Northern line, and the DLR.

Despite Covid-19 restrictions, the work has been completed by engineers working in shifts around the clock and is set to be delivered as planned in 2022, within the £700m budget.

To help passengers get to their destinations during the closure, services on the Charing Cross branch of the Northern line will be improved, and a new bus route between Oval and the City will guarantee that customers in South London are able to commute easily.

To minimise travel impacts, before and during the closure, TfL will be running a London communications campaign to give customers the necessary tools and advice they need to retime, reroute and use alternative transport for their journeys.

RTM is running a virtual event on Passenger Experience on August 18. To find out more, click here

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