Apologies if there is a thread to discuss this work [I seem to remember there was but I can't find it.]
I haven't noticed anyone mentioning recently the work going on at Queen Street station - redeveloping what I assumed was a previously unused platform. There is now a lot of activity - the notice at Queen Street seems to indicate that there is going to be more than one additional platform at Queen Street. Does anyone know where the second will be located or is it a case of naming the single platform as 4a and 4b for example?
The notice on platform 6 at Central also indicates that redevelopment work is 'imminent'. Does anyone have any information about when this is actually going to begin?
Finally can anyone enlighten me as to what work is being undertaken next to the old firestation - opposite the Prison as a couple of cranes have recently been erected.
I'm not a regular poster to this forum but I have changed my name to George E to differentiate myself from 'george'. Many thanks
The work at Queen St includes re-commissioning the old platform 1 which is opposite the current platform 1 and creating a bay platform 5 at the end of the current platform 3. This will be exclusively for the Cardiff Bay shuttle and platform 3 will become platform 4 and a through platform. Also the staton entrance will be rebuilt incorporating access to the new platform 1. The current platforms 1 and 2 will become 2 and 3. Confused?
The original date for central redevelopment was 2014 so maybe that's starting early, Queen St was planned for early 2013.
Hi George E - re your two tower crane enquiry, It looks like this is 3 more blocks of student castle of 4 - 5 & 8 floors. Mind you I'm only going from this little photo here, http://www.studentcastle.co.uk/cardiff-student-accommodation/overview/ so maybe details have changed?
As predicted, the rail improvement works are due to begin December 27th with Queen Street Station.
Just to update my original post. The electronic message boards at Queen Street station were reporting earlier this week that refurbisments are due to start on 27.12.2012. This may mean that redevelopment work is imminent on the existing station building.
They have put a builders enclosure on Guilford Crescent so I assume that is how they will be getting the materials up to the station. Also the footpath between Station Terrace and Guilford Crescent appears to be closed off from public use.
Just posted on the Cardiff Council twitter feed:
"A full refurbishment of the St Mary St rail bridge starts this month. Expect delays due to lane restrictions & major scaffolding"
Is this just a 'lick of paint' job or are they doing an upgrade in anticipation of the station renovation?
Big glass tunnel hopefully and bring back the badges (City of Cardiff I think) which I think are painted over. It could be rather wonderful - especially if they could mirror with the Newport Rd/Queen St bridge.
Work will take 3-4 months to complete so not just a paint job!
Interestingly will it be called platform zero?
Could we have a situation whereby the extra trains from the Valleys will terminate at Queen St until the development at Central is complete? That might explain why Queen St is being done first. All very logical but maybe someone has had their thinking cap on.
The upgrade at Central is quite important. It's needed a proper south entrance for a while but will there be room for any further expansion once platform 8 is built? In 10 or 20 years people might be asking why they didn't build a platform 9.
any news on this? I see some kind of work is going on??...
It's always a bit embarrassing when you leave Wales, travel on electric rail in clean trains and then come back, reach Newport and see the run down stations and dirty trains...
The current work is to add platforms to Queen St which includes another line through the station and a line to a terminating platform for the Bay shuttle.
The standard of the network really is piss poor. I travel to work every day on London Overground which is the dogs knackers compared to Valley lines. Transport for London have taken over several London suburban lines and quadrupled passenger numbers by upgrading stations, increasing frequencies and buying new trains (which they're about to lengthen for the 2nd time).
WG or Network Rail need to take a leaf out of TfL's book as there's so much potential in the Valleys network, which if realised can shift people from their cars and create a Metro that south Walians can be proud of.
How do you know so much what is happening in Queen St station living and working in London? I agree the WG should create a metro link like the DLR, transport infrastructure will be millions x better. Just really hope it happens since it was discussed quite recently.
The standard of Arriva Trains is appalling too...some of the coaches are disgusting. You shouldn't have to think about sitting on a clean bit of the seat or worry about getting filth on your clothes by brushing passed the doors...
so the line will pass through Central, where there'll also be a new platform? I like the idea of a larger station feeling in Central, given that the view from the platform makes it seem like your in the back end of nowhere, not in the centre of the capital city...
I'd put a giant roof or dome over the place.
Cardiff Crossrail on the way?
The investment in numerous London stations is staggering.
Would be money well spent on bringing Cardiff central and Queen Street into the 21st century.
Improved infrastructure is the way out of this recession me thinks.
It benefits everyone
Central is awful doesn't have the feeling of a capital city train station there should be a roof covering the thing at the moment it feels like a shed.
Completely agree. Paddington has the important feeling that capital city train stations have, but other European regional cities have impressive train stations such as Milano Centrale, Venezia Centrale and Barcelona Sants Estació, but Cardiff feels more like the train station for an outpost in the Wild West.
Its the acoustic of the arch domed train station that appeals to me.
Cardiff Central really does need a overaul- on events days this is a really busy station - first port of call and many first impressions.
Make it more majestic
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e1/Cardiff_Central_railway_station_concourse_-_01.jpg this part of the station could be better also.
I don't see there ever being a roof put on the station, and neither do I think it needs one. The platforms need a good tidy up/paint and maybe upgrade the facilities (refurb toilets, couple extra small retail units) but that's about it. It's actually quite nice, it's the poor state of buildings in the immeditate area that lets it down.
If there ever is a major refurb of the station I suppose it will be of the sort seen in Newport and Reading, a covered access bridge on one side of the station with new entrances on both north and south sides. I'd imagine it would be easier to put this on the east side of the station, but depending on what happens on the Seren plot and the Brains brewery site an extension on the west could be possible.
But I don't see this happening for a long time if ever. The rail network needs upgrading first to increase the number of passengers before money needs to be spent getting these extra passengers in and out of the station.
I don't think that the train station necessarily needs a roof, though I think it would make standing as you wait for your train a more pleasant experience.
Thought I do agree that first impressions count, and the station is basically the gateway to Cardiff.
Cardiff Central is tiny compared to others, but it has always been packed whenever I go in there, and seems to be busier than the ones in Milan and Lyon.
It really is quite underwhelming compared to proper big city stations like Bristol and Edinburgh Waverley. I travelled home with a friend from Liverpool a few years ago and he laughed at Central station, I was quite offended at the time but I see his point.
Not much we can do about it though, the new platform and south entrance aren't going to make any difference.
Newport looks shit now anyway...what is it two years? What are they even doing with the old station building?
Wasn't is supposed to have a new pavillion styled roof as part of it's redevelopment plans?
I have spent years in London.
The investment the metropolitan stations - lines - trains get compared to Wales is incredible.
Some of our politicians need to take a review of the investment in London compared to Wales.
Why do we tolerate second best nay third world best?
There has been interesting design in Cardiff in the last few decades.
Central station should be a landmark building to be proud and confident with.
It should make much more of a bolder statement.
It must be able to handle more trains and passengers and give visitors a positive first and last impression.
Get our priorities right!
Central Station inside is nice - I like the art deco-ish styling. The northern entrance is servicable but I agree it doesn't look grand. I think it was built in the 1930's - maybe it reflected the economics of the time?
We did of course knock down the lovely Queen St station and erect a brick box akin to a public khazi in its stead, but truth be told whilst it was a nice building it wasn't particularly grand. Even the Taff Vale HQ down the Bay was rather mundane despite it being built at the time when commercial organisations were building huge, vainglorious temples to mammon.
It appears that we don't do grand railway buildings in Wales and maybe this is a reflection of the fact that the railways here were primarily used to shift minerals. The railways, rather than opening up the world to Wales, seem to me to have been built primarily to facilitate the extraction of wealth. Why build grand stations?
I don't think there is much we can do about it now although the platform area's at Central need a huge overhaul. The current improvements will help but don't expect Grand Central Station, Madrid or even Hull or York.
I'd also agree the amount spent on transport in London is huge. Apparently 1 billion has been earmarked to build a tube station at Battersea. Having lived in that area for a number of years commuters are spoilt for choice with a range of destinations offered by Clapham Junction or Battersea Park overground stations. There is also a very serviceable bus service, plus tubes at Clapham Common and Clapham South which are all walkeable from the southern reaches of Battersea. It seems to me that this is just a vanity project and I'd love to see the cost benefit figures for that one. The same amount of money spent on one tube stop as the electrification of the GWML from Paddington to Swansea. It really brings things into perspective.
The Northern line extension to Battersea is being largely privately funded by the developers of Battesea power station, guess it's in their interest to have a tube line running to their development.
Are you sure? I'd like to see the source of that info as I'm sure the last govt announcement of infrastructure projects specifically mentioned funding for this.
Yeah, the money is being made available as a loan on a low interest basis by the government to get the project off the ground. The money will be recouped from the developers and The US Embassy (who are moving to Nine Elms) as well as through business rates over a 25 year period.
Is one problem that the lines running in and out of the station are "above" ground level making a tidying up of the station or redesign more difficult? ( hope that makes sense )
They sold a shed load of flats at Battersea in phase one last week.
It's another world up there!
Back to our neck of the woods:
Cardiff Central was opened in 1850 and rebuilt 82 years later in 1932.
Guess what? It's now 82 years later again. Somehow I don't think the new grey cladding on the back is going to mark the occasion in quite the same way.
I think the upgrades at Swansea station are good. Much better than before. More of the 'tidy what we've got' approach than that 'build a new section' approach.
The Swansea upgrade is an improvement and has been done well.
where are the archietects opinions on Cardiff Central and what could be done realistically to improve it?
Both first and last impressions are not to be undervalued
Looks like the long awaited new bus station is going to take a lot longer, saying that I am still not convinced it is needed. Does the bus station ever have loads of buses waiting? Not that I have seen. I think we could get away with something fairly modest in size, then put the land there to better use and make it a real gateway to the Capital.
True, there are never that many buses waiting there. But I think it is more to do with planning for tomorrow.
At the moment, the infrastructure of the bus system is good, not perfect, but good. But in the future, in ten, fifteen, twenty years time it could be strained. So it's more about updating for the future.
Another thing is appearance. Bus terminals are not exactly known for their beauty, but the current one looks like it should belong in Downtown Chernobyl, circa 1986.
Will it look impressive when - if - the Commonwealth Games officials come to view the city?.. hmm...
Does it really need to be that complicated? We have the best planning school in the UK and an excellent school of architecture - use their input?
The basic problem is that, unlike other transport spending, investment in railways isn't subject to the Barnett formula.
The Barnett formula isn't great for Wales - but at least it would level the playing field if it was applied to rail. The lack of investment on rail in Wales compared to BR / Railtrack/ Network Rail's spending on vanity station developments in London is shocking.
Even worse is the fact that the Welsh Government has had to fund solid projects like reopening the line to Ebbw Vale out of Barnett consequentials that exclude rail. In other words not only do we not get the rail consequential - we have to denude other income streams to make up for Network Rail's vanity projects.
I think Central is okay, though of course it could be better. You have to remember that the great age of the railway was around 1840-1850. At that time Cardiff hadn't really come into its own. If you look at population numbers it was really the late Victorian/Edwardian period when Cardiff took off and the grat era of rail investment was over (hence places like Liverpool and even York have more impressive stations). That's just how it is. I think it's pretty functional and efficient, a south entrance and a lick of paint would certainly help.
Cardiff is a wet city - it rains far too often - the powers that be should grow a pair and insist from the central funding in Whitehall that Cardiff Central has a grandeur fitting of a capital city.
Only demand a fraction of what numerous London stations are getting.
Wake Up - or get left behind
Does the bottom part of this page mean that work is likely to start (or has started) at Central?
AFAIK the new platform works at Central aren't due to start until 2014, looks like something's happening now from the website though.
Queen Street works are progressing well with new platform concrete supports going in.
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