Station lift upgrades continue

Tom Moran, managing director of Thameslink and Great Northern, tries out one of the new lifts at Luton Airport Parkway.

Network Rail is having a ‘push’ on lift replacements and refurbishments, it seems.

After Rail Insider recently published details of lift upgrades at Lichfield Trent Valley, Selhurst and Tamworth, Network Rail has now released information on lift improvements at Luton Airport Parkway and Clapham Junction stations.

At Luton Airport Parkway, the old lifts on Platforms 1, 2/3 and 4 have been removed and new ones installed in a £900,000 project.

Work began in July and all three lifts were closed at the same time, speeding up completion of the project so that station users could reap the benefits of the project more quickly. During the upgrade, Thameslink’s dedicated assisted travel team supported passengers who required step-free access.

Gary Walsh, Network Rail.

Gary Walsh, route director for Network Rail’s East Midlands route, said: “We’re really happy that this upgrade is now complete.

“We know the old lifts were a big frustration to regular users, and the new ones on Platforms 1, 2/3 and 4 are now more reliable.

“We worked hard to keep any impact on passengers to a minimum and we’re really grateful for everybody’s patience whilst this work took place.”

Luton Airport Parkway will also be receiving better information screens and refurbished toilets as part of Thameslink’s network-wide, multimillion-pound station improvement programme.

One of the 10 lifts at Clapham Junction station will be taken out of service each weekday for two weeks.

Meanwhile, work is about to start upgrading lifts at Clapham Junction station, taking advantage of the temporary drop in passenger numbers.

There will be a rolling programme of lift closures for two weeks, as one of the station’s 10 lifts is taken out of service each weekday from Monday 16 November to Friday 27 November 2020.

Cem Davis, Network Rail.

Cem Davis, interim head of route stations for Network Rail Southern region, said: “We appreciate that all our passengers want seamless journeys, whether they are carrying heavy bags, pushchairs or use wheelchairs, and, while there is no good time to take our lifts out of service, we’ve moved this work forward to take advantage of this quieter period when there are fewer passengers travelling.

“There will be extra staff to support people who require assistance and where possible, we encourage them to pre-book their travel though the assistance helpline.”

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