Plans to transform one of Birmingham’s busiest railway stations to meet ever increasing demand have been brought to life in a new concept fly-through video issued today.
The new University railway station building, to be located close to the existing station, will offer a bigger, brighter and more comfortable space and new facilities for passengers.
A planning application for the new station has been submitted to Birmingham City Council and promises a welcoming and safe gateway to the world class University of Birmingham campus and the University Hospital Birmingham and wider NHS site.
The current building, completed in 1978, was designed for just 400,000 passengers a year, but is now used by 3.2 million due to the growth of the hospital and university sites. Following redevelopment, the station will be able to accommodate seven million passengers a year with future growth.
Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “I am pleased that we are pressing ahead with our plans for University Station to make sure it is up and running in time for the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
“The design for the station looks fantastic, and I know it will better serve the local community and make an impressive entrance for students, staff and visitors.
“The fact we need a new station is testament to the success of our world-class university and hospital and we are working with them to make sure the revamped station is the best it can possibly be.”
The redevelopment is being led by Transport for West Midlands (TfWM), part of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) and West Midlands Rail Executive (WMRE) and backed by a range of partners. These include the University of Birmingham, Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership, Network Rail, West Midlands Trains and the University Hospitals Birmingham Trust.
Trevor Payne, director of estates at the University of Birmingham said: “Staff and students have told us how important this development is. With the millions of people who use University Station each year, this will be a valuable asset to the city’s transport infrastructure. In 2022, the University will host hockey and squash as part of the Commonwealth Games, and being able to provide a 21st century station is critical, as well as providing excellent facilities for staff and students of the future, and the local community.”
Cllr Ian Ward, leader of Birmingham City Council and transport portfolio holder for the WMCA, said: “University Station is one of many transport projects in development across the region including the reopening of the Camp Hill Rail line, extensions to the Metro tram network, new cycle routes and the Sprint bus rapid transit routes.
“We’re tackling poor air quality and congestion and that means offering people of the West Midlands reliable, rapid and affordable alternatives to the car. Much of this infrastructure will be in place in time for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and leave a long lasting transport legacy beyond.”
More than 230 people responded to a public engagement when the new plans were unveiled during the summer and the vast majority were supportive of the plans.
Malcolm Holmes, executive director, WMRE and director of rail, TfWM, said: “We would like to thank all those who took the time to talk to us about their new station.
“The plans have created a lot of buzz and we are delighted that so many customers and members of the wider community were supportive of the designs.
“The existing station building is frequently crowded and is clearly no longer fit for purpose. The new station building will provide a much better environment and experience.”
The new station will be built at the opposite end of the platform, allowing the existing building and platform to remain in use throughout construction.