Sunday, 28 September 2008
SOME NEW STATION IDEAS
Hands up if you'd like to see some of these stations on the Tube Map. Some may have been closed for reasons of underuse, expense or fire, and not reopened. Some would be entirely new.
The principle: London has several inner city areas with poor transport links and socioeconomic problems, all within a stone's throw of the city centre. New lines aside, to encourage regeneration of these neghbourhoods and revitalisation of residential communities, the following stations could be built relatively inexpensively and be of immense benefit to inner London communities.
Furthermore, we are all aware that we face a housing shortage, and need to increase our urban densities if we are to safeguard our countryside for future generations. The logical target of such densification (to coin Richard Rogers) would logically be the fringes of central London. Naturally we're facing a chicken or egg situation. Development won't come without transportation and investment tends to go to successful places first... This obstacle notwithstanding, more people need more station capacity and I believe the best way to provide it is with more stations, not necessarily enlarging existing ones, thereby increasing the convenience of the passenger at the same time.
N.B. I personally don't believe you need to employ world-class architects and use gilted escalators such as happened on the JLE (OK I exaggerate about the gilted escalators, but only just). New stations need only be functional and need not be prohibitively expensive. Of course, it's always a lot easier and cheaper to build them during construction of the line, but hey, it's too late and London does need to find solutions.
1. Wood Lane (Almost Complete) - included for reference.
2. Lords. Not the old Metropolitan Station but on the Jubilee line on the large gap between Baker Street and St John's Wood.
3. York Road. Reopen this station! The King's Cross Railway Lands development is next door, a rundown backwater of Barnsbury behind it. It's a long old way up to Cally Road!
4. Mount Pleasant. A long old trundle on the Circle Line too between King's X and Farringdon. This is a densely populated area.
5. Barnsbury. Although the concept of the Victoria was to be effectively an Express Line between existing stations, it may be time for the line to mature and reach more of the neighbourhoods it passes under, this being one of them.
6. Pentonville Road. An entirely new station for the Northern Line City branch.
7. City Road. An old station which could be reopened in an area which needs some vitality.
8. Shoreditch High Street is about to have a brand spanking new station on the East London Line, passing right over the central line. It's a huge distance between Liverpool St and Bethnal Green and this is a well-populated central neighbourhood. Dosn't it make sense to have an interchange here?
9. Tower Bridge. The JLE was all about quality, not quantity, but once again it bypasses busy neighbourhoods entirely.
10. South Kentish Town was closed decades ago and is now a Cash Converters. We all know the problems of overcrowding at Camden Town. I propose this as a better solution to a massive overhaul of Camden Town station.