Network Rail have committed to enhancing passenger journeys through London as Victoria station is set to receive a £30m innovation investment.
The infrastructural investment works will involve the creation of more concourse space and increasing the total number of ticket gates from 86 to 111, including eight new wide (accessible) gates. These upgrade works will significantly enhance passenger journeys through speeding up their travel the station and improve accessibility for people with reduced mobility, luggage, or pushchairs.
Lucy McAuliffe, Network Rail’s stations director, said:
“We’re really excited to see this work get underway. Putting people first is at the heart of everything we do and that starts from the moment they walk through the door.
"Victoria is one of London’s busiest stations and a gateway to Gatwick Airport and the South Coast so investing in creating an enlarged Sussex concourse and increasing the number of ticket gates available will help everyone to feel more comfortable; setting us up well as passengers return to the railway during a busy summer season. We’re really pleased to be able to make this investment in improving the service we offer all our passengers."
Wendy Morton, Department for Transport’s rail minister, said:
“I am delighted to see these upgrades at London Victoria station, a true cornerstone and hub of the capital. These improvements, funded by the Department for Transport, will make travel easier, more comfortable, and more accessible for millions of passengers.”
The expansion of the station concourse area will be focused on the portion that serves platform 15 to 19, accompanying a spacious access route that will be created between platform 14 and the existing escalators to the Victoria Place shopping centre.
The creation of additional space for ticket gates and wider routes between the concourse and platforms will require the Gatwick Express ticket windows to be moved into a more prominent position. Other retail units will need to be repositioned elsewhere throughout the station.
Angie Doll, chief operating officer for Govia Thameslink, which runs Southern and Gatwick Express, said:
“We’re delighted with Network Rail’s improvements to the layout of the station, opening up space for our passengers to get to and from their trains more quickly and comfortably. The dedicated Gatwick Express ticket windows will move next to the existing Southern windows.”
These infrastructural works could lead to major disruptions for passenger travels, so to minimise these risks the works will be conducted alongside the London Victoria resignalling project. This will ensure the majority of disruptive works will be conducted when there are fewer or no passenger services running at the station, as lines will be closed.
Work on the project is set to get underway from this September, starting with the relocation of the Gatwick Express ticket office. This will be followed by work on the Kent gatelines (platforms 1-7) in November and the Sussex gatelines later in the year. The work is due for completion in late 2023.
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