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Council reveals vision for how HS2 could transform Crewe

Rail

Andrew Forster
23 March 2020
Crewe: transformed station
Crewe: transformed station

 

Cheshire East Council has published its vision for redeveloping Crewe station and its surroundings, but says the proposals depend on the Government funding works to increase the number of HS2 services that stop in the town. 

The council envisages Crewe station being remodelled with a transfer deck above the platforms and a new station canopy. 

Consultation on the proposals for the station and surrounding area took place last summer (LTT 19 Jul 19), and the final version of the Crewe Hub area action plan was presented to councillors this month. 

A new station entrance would be built on Weston Road on the east side of the station, incorporating bus interchange and a multi-storey car park nearby. 

The only station access is currently from Nantwich Road, which crosses the station. In future this would be for only pedestrians and cyclists, with extensive public realm works to the road proposed. 

A third station entrance, for pedestrians and cyclists, would be built on Gresty Road on the west side of the station. 

The Government is committed to building Phase 2a of HS2, which will extend the high-speed line from the West Midlands to Crewe. 

At present, however, only two HS2 trains are expected to call at the station in each direction each hour, using lengthened platforms. Cheshire East wants this increased to seven each way. 

The area action plan says that if the additional works necessary to allow seven trains an hour are not delivered “there would not be the step-change in connectivity at Crewe to support the level of regeneration and growth within the council’s ambitious plans. 

“In this scenario the council would unlikely be able to afford a local contribution towards the station, resulting in Government delivering a sub-optimal solution for Crewe.”

Other features of the plan include a £40m Southern Link Road Bridge spanning the south end of the station is proposed, connecting Gresty Road to Weston Road (LTT 19 Jul &22 Nov 19). This will remove traffic from the Nantwich Road corridor.   

Land around the station will be redeveloped: 

  • the area east of Mill Street, northwest of the station, will be residential 
  • land west of Macon Way and around the Crewe Arms roundabout northeast of the station will be mixed use, with housing in the north and employment in the south
  • commercial development will be built on land east of Weston Road on the east side of the station  
  • a mixed use development will be built on the west side of the station east of Gresty Road, with a new public plaza and entrance to the station at the site of Rail House

Existing car parking near the station will be removed and consolidated into new multi-storey car parks off Weston Road.

“It is expected that in the order of an additional 1,200 car parking spaces will be required to satisfy demand for rail travel in the next ten years,” Hayley Kirkham, the Cheshire East’s HS2 programme director, told councillors. 

The council wants station car parking passed from the control of the West Coast Partnership franchise to the council. This would give the council a revenue stream to help provide the local contribution to the overall plan.   

Cheshire East is also pressing for a Government commitment to building a new Crewe North Junction, which would allow trains to call at Crewe and then join the proposed HS2 line to Manchester (Phase 2b).  

Other requests being made to the Government are allowing 100 per cent retention of business rates growth in areas around the station, and a funding contribution to new road infrastructure, including the Southern Link Road Bridge.

 
 
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