The first in a series of contracts for the £800 million upgrade of London Bridge station will be tendered this year, Network Rail has confirmed.
A main contractor for the revamp of the station’s concourse will be sought by the end of 2011, followed by packages early next year covering track renewals, signalling and ancillary works.
Work on the project is due to start in 2013 and take five years to complete. A design team of architect Grimshaw and consulting engineer WSP has already been appointed.
The London Bridge scheme, which received government approval as part of the final stage of the £5.5 billion Thameslink upgrade programme, will be Network Rail’s largest station project in a decade.
Plans include a new concourse underneath the tracks. Entrances will be created on Tooley Street and St Thomas Street to improve links between the areas around the station.
The project was first announced as a £650m upgrade in 2009, but was postponed until approval was given for the scheme as part of the Department for Transport’s settlement in last year’s Comprehensive Spending Review.
As part of the second and final phase of the Thameslink upgrade, the number of tracks going through the station will be increased from six to nine at the expense of terminating platforms, which will be reduced from nine to six. This will enable 18 of Thameslink’s planned 24 trains per hour to stop at London Bridge.
Other features include:
- Filling the below-track concourse with natural light through the canopies that will cover the platforms above;
- Step-free access to all platforms from the main concourse;
- Space for around two-thirds more passengers than use the station now.
“We believe this is a key project both for commuters in London, and for the rail civil engineering sector,” said Civil Engineering Contractors Association head of industry affairs Alasdair Reisner.
“Network Rail’s approach to the project is to be commended, as they are looking for a much more integrated relationship with their suppliers, something contractors are equally keen to see.”