Work has started to clear the site of a new rail interchange at Old Oak Common in West London. Railway lines and a train depot will be removed as part of a billion-pound plan for a new ‘super-hub’ station that will provide connections to London, Bristol and the West and to Birmingham and the North via the HS2 line, the Elizabeth Line and existing rail services.
Before building and track demolition can begin, Network Rail must first remove overhead electric lines and disconnect utilities.
Part of the site is occupied by the former Heathrow Express depot. After the last train of the old Heathrow Express Class 332 fleet left on a low-loader lorry on 16 February, destined to become a ‘gate guardian’ at the new Siemens factory at Goole, the site was formally handed over to Network Rail for the decommissioning project to begin.
Once preparatory work is complete, HS2 Ltd will demolish the depot ready for construction of the new station, which is due for completion in 2030 and will act as a catalyst for local regeneration.
Patrick Cawley, director of On Network Works for HS2 Ltd and Network Rail, said: “Our teams are busy making sure that everything is ready for the latest stage of this vital project.
“Network Rail’s work, in collaboration with Heathrow Express, SRSA (South Rail Systems Alliance) and the DfT, is crucial to facilitate the redevelopment of Old Oak Common.
“The new high-speed rail station will be truly transformative, bringing significant passenger and community benefits.”