Rail progress for the North West
Elected representatives and other stakeholders in the North West had an opportunity to learn about Translink's exciting plans for the former Waterside Train Station at an engagement event in Londonderry on January 25.
Ambitious plans are afoot to redevelop the former station as a brand new North-West Multi-Modal Transport Hub, with the stated ambition of transforming travel in the region and helping regenerate the local area.
This event was an opportunity for stakeholders to get a sense of the scale of the project, which is scheduled to commence in April 2018.
Representing an investment of around £27m, funding has been secured from the EU’s INTERREG VA Programme with support from the Department for Infrastructure and the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport in Ireland.
The plans will include the demolition of the city’s current railway station, with that site being redeveloped to allow for more practical communal use.
Local stakeholders were able to view a state-of-the-art 3D video model of the proposed new station, featuring enhanced exterior designs, the provision of community space and the opening up of a significant swathe of new space along the banks of the River Foyle.
The 3D model is a fly-through of the new station, showcasing many of the enhanced passenger amenities including new platforms, an enhanced Park and Ride and an active and sustainable Travel Centre.
Other station features will include a new park and ride facility, a bus turning circle and a Greenway link to the city centre via the Peace Bridge, as well as track, signalling and telecoms work.
Chris Conway, Translink Group Chief Executive, said: “This is a major scheme that will be a key portal for the North-West region, supporting business, leisure and tourism opportunities. It also protects the iconic Victorian station building and will be a catalyst for development in the wider Waterside and Duke Street area.
“We have seen strong growth in passenger numbers of around 37 per cent on the Londonderry line rail corridor since the introduction of the hourly service, and the new facility will further help to build on this success by encouraging more people to choose more active, sustainable transport modes.”
Chris added: “We are committed to making public transport your first choice for travel in Northern Ireland, and have invested heavily in the city in recent years, with track and fleet enhancements representing an investment of over £55m.
“We are very excited about this latest project and the benefits it brings to the region. The station design combines the best of heritage with next generation requirements providing a real sense of openness inside, with a new civic space that has been well received.”
Bronagh Lynch, Architect with Consarc Design Group, who are working with Translink to restore the site, said: “This project represents a great opportunity to restore an iconic Victorian station building, making it ready to face the transport challenges of the 21st Century.
“The planned restoration will protect and enhance this well-loved feature of the city’s architectural heritage, making it a true gateway to the North West and a facility that the entire community can take pride in and utilise.
“Consarc Design Group is delighted to be on board with this major project as we work to give this significant listed building a viable future.”
Translink is working together with the Department for Infrastructure, the Republic of Ireland’s Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, Derry City and Strabane District Council, Donegal County Council and Sustrans to deliver the project.
For more information on the proposed hub, check out www.translink.co.uk/northwesthub/ and follow @Translink_NI #northwesthub