Redeveloping Haymarket Station

Focus on Scotland Haymarket

As the fourth busiest railway station in Scotland, Haymarket Station sees up to 4 million passengers pass through its doors each year.

Not surprisingly, each year the average amount of passengers increases and as a result the railway has to ensure that it can cope with the expected volume of people wanting to use its services.

With passenger numbers expected to reach 10 million by 2030, Haymarket Station has recently undertaken a redevelopment to ready it for the future. The project included the creation of additional platform space, the improvement of amenities and the introduction of better access points, with improved DDA compliant facilities.

The project comprised the construction of a new station with a new concourse and building, a new access bridge with step free access to Platform 4 and new platform level canopies. The station was designed to work as an interchange for travel and as such now links to local tram and bus networks, with provisions for cyclists and an associated taxi rank.

Network Rail Area Director for Scotland East, Alex Sharkey, said:

“Haymarket Station is already one of the busiest in Scotland and passenger numbers are set to continue to grow in the years ahead. This new building will ensure the railway is able to provide first-class facilities for those passengers and the new, modern station will also complement the wider redevelopment of the city’s west end.”

Work began on the project in May 2012 and reached completion in April 2014. The redevelopment of the station was implemented as part of the Scottish Government’s strategic Edinburgh-Glasgow Improvement Programme (EGIP) which aims to improve all aspects of rail service between Scotland’s two largest cities.

Leading UK construction and regeneration group Morgan Sindall was the main contractor on the project. The company works across multiple sectors and has previously completed rail projects including an £8 million refurbishment scheme on Liverpool’s underground stations.

Throughout the redevelopment of Haymarket Station the station remained open at all times, so Morgan Sindall worked hard to ensure that all disruption was kept to a minimum. Day and night time work hours were required to facilitate the construction programme, so where possible light dampening equipment was employed to reduce light pollution.

Focus on Scotland Haymarket

During the works, platforms were resurfaced, an ETFE Air Filled Pillow roof was installed, the footbridge was fabricated and stairs were removed. During the fabrication of the footbridge, crane work was employed and this facilitated an important aspect of the project.

A new 500kVA power supply was installed into the station, below the concourse, and this works alongside the new power supply for Edinburgh trams. The station also received new passenger information systems, eliminating traditional signage, with the systems working in conjunction with help pads.

To round out the project, a specially commissioned mural was created by urban artist Gary Mackay. The mural depicts key moments in the community’s history and was given the go ahead through a motion in Scottish Parliament.

Before any works were undertaken on the redevelopment project, local residents and businesses were contacted and briefed on the proposed works and a community drop-in meeting took place at the nearby Hilton Hotel. Through direct, clear communication, all affected groups and organisations were given advanced warning of how work may impact their lives.

The works on the station were not the only transport projects that took place in Scotland; the redevelopment of Haymarket Station joined the multi-million pound refurbishment of Waverley Station and works on the tram network. Although the implementation of three key transport links in Scotland is never ideal, the project had been in the pipeline for 20 years and it was deemed the ideal time to be completed. The work was also carefully planned so that it took into account all major events which took place in the local area.

Situated in Edinburgh, Haymarket Station opened in 1842 and was originally designed as the terminus of the Glasgow and Edinburgh Railway. Today, the station serves most of Scotland, including Fife and Glasgow as well as links to London.

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