Reduced congestion at London’s Stratford station is on the table as Network Rail secure a £2m boost from the Department for Transport.
Stratford Station has seen a surge in demand - despite the impact of the pandemic - ever since the 2012 Olympics, and the forecast for this is set to grow even more as the area continues to regenerate.
Between 2019 and 2020, almost 42m passengers were using Stratford station to start, continue or complete a journey, making it the busiest non-terminal station in London.
Comparatively, this number is roughly the same as Birmingham New Street station, but with only a fifth of the space available to manage the same number of passengers.
Peak times leave the station exceptionally busy, with congestion management measures necessary to manage the crowding, including one-way systems around the station and onto the platforms to maintain passenger safety.
"We are developing plans to help provide more space, improve passenger circulation and maintain safety."
The DfT funding will help Network Rail develop plans for the TfL managed station, sustaining safety for passengers throughout busy times, thus improving the overall station experience as passenger numbers continue to rise.
The improvements could help create more room on specific platforms and around entrances to improve circulation space, but these plans are subject to approval and further funding.
Other changes could involve improved information screens and wayfinding, in collaboration with TfL.
The upgrades will take place across several phases and customers may start to see the first phase of work get underway between late 2022 and 2024, with the potential for more work over the next 5 years.
Ellie Burrows, Network Rail’s Route Director for Anglia, said “I’m delighted that we have been provided with the funding for the next stage of development to help relieve congestion at this important station in East London.”
She added, “I appreciate it can be challenging to navigate around the station during busy times which is why we are developing plans to help provide more space, improve passenger circulation and maintain safety at the station.”