Peckham Rye, in South London, is currently the busiest interchange station in the entire country without step-free access to platforms or accessible facilities for passengers.
To fix this, Network Rail has received £1 million from the Department for Transport to develop designs for a more accessible station, with more capacity and better facilities .
Network Rail aims to provide new lifts at the station, making all platforms accessible for parents with buggies, people with shopping and those with mobility issues. Accessible toilets will also be part of the scope and, to allow for future growth in passenger numbers, access to each of the platforms will be improved and the amount of space on each platform increased.
How the station integrates with its surrounding will also be considered, particularly with the new Station Square, and ways will be found to provide better access into the station with a much larger gateline to ease passenger flow.
Network Rail’s lead development manager Andrew Wood said: “Peckham Rye station is the busiest interchange station in the country without lifts, making it difficult for some passengers to use the station. Passenger numbers today have outgrown the original design, platforms and passageways being too narrow, leading to overcrowding at peaks times.
“We want to make the station accessible to all passengers, improve the overall journey experience, make the station safer and provide capacity for long-term growth. We are committed to working closely with train operators, rail passengers, Southwark Council, the Arch Company and the local community to take these proposals forward.
“Over the next 15 months we will be holding online workshops to involve interested parties in crafting the designs.”
Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) and Southeastern both operate trains through Peckham Rye.
Paul Best, GTR’s senior project manager, said: “Having worked with Network Rail and the local community for over a year, since Peckham Rye was designated a priority station for capacity, accessibility and safety improvements, we are delighted that the funding to design a development scheme has been signed off.
“The transformation envisaged will make this important station fit for 21st-century travel, with huge benefits for everyone who uses it, and especially our passengers with mobility difficulties.”
Southeastern’s passenger services director, David Wornham, added: “We’re always wanting to do more for our passengers and work with Network Rail to improve the facilities at our stations and make them as accessible as possible.
“Peckham Rye will become much easier to use for all of our passengers as a result of this work.”