Full steam ahead for second entrance at Hackney Central Overground station
- Credit: Hackney Council
A second entrance at Hackney Central Overground station could be up and running by the end of 2021, after receiving planning approval yesterday.
The plan to build an entrance and ticket hall in Graham Road, which has been delayed by nearly a year because of the coronavirus pandemic, will give passengers direct access to the westbound platform of the station.
It will help ease passenger congestion and promote sustainable travel, according to the council on whose land it will be built.
The current entrance in Amhurst Road dates back to the 80s and was only designed with a 20-year operating life in mind, therefore struggles to accommodate increasing numbers of commuters.
Since its launch, the London Overground has seen passenger numbers increase by about 160 per cent, with continued growth predicted, and the number of passengers using the walkway from Hackney Central station to Hackney Downs has rocketed by 340pc since it opened in 2015.
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User surveys carried out by Transport for London (TfL) showed that about 30 to 35pc of existing passengers would use the proposed new entrance instead of the existing route.
The new station entrance is being delivered in partnership between Hackney Council, TfL and Network Rail, with TfL applying for planning permission and responsible for building work.
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Mayor of Hackney, Philip Glanville, said: “I am pleased that plans for a much-needed new entrance for Hackney Central station have got the go ahead.
“Anyone who uses the station will know how overcrowded and busy the station can become, and the existing station entrance is now too small to handle the current volume of passengers passing through it, especially during peak periods and for more vulnerable users.
“By providing our own land to create a southern entrance, this partnership and joint investment is the first part of a longer term solution to issues around the station - which will eventually unlock the opportunity to comprehensively refurbish the north side of the station to make sure it too provides the safe and welcoming arrival to Hackney Central that passengers deserve.”
The development will also see new cycle parking, drinking fountains and public space will be created, including several trees as part of the council’s commitment to tackle the climate emergency.
The council is in conversation with activists from the non-violent direct action group Extinction Rebellion, who created a garden on the derelict site last year, to help find it a new home.
In the meantime, the council has entered into a licensed agreement with them to allow them to remain in situ until access is required by TfL to start construction.