Pressure on Council Over Ealing Broadway Station

Critics say redevelopment plans are not good enough

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The official consultation on redevelopment proposals for Ealing Broadway station end tomorrow (10 Jan) and local Conservatives say the Council must fight for a better deal.

Crossrail plans - which have come under fire - include step free access, a new entrance hall and a glass fronted facade alongside new lifts and staircases, but, no escaltors.

Cllr Phil Taylor, Conservative Transport spokesman, said:“The proposed canopy sticks out like a sore thumb.  Ealing town centre’s predominantly Edwardian architecture and Haven Green require a more sympathetic solution.  The station should welcome people to Ealing rather than screaming ''CROSSRAIL'' at the top of its voice across Haven Green.

''The Council also needs to show us how it proposes to lay out the new station forecourt at Ealing Broadway.  It is a bit silly not to consider the station and the forecourt at the same time.  In particular many residents will be keen to see how facilities for cars to drop off passengers are provided.  It is appropriate to prioritise pedestrians and bus passengers immediately adjacent to the station entrance.  It is not appropriate to banish people who are dropped by cars.”

Ealing Central and Acton MP, Angie Bray, says the scheme has major flaws:

''The Council needs to keep pressing Crossrail for escalators to keep people moving through this busy station.  At the very least the design must not preclude them being retro-fitted at a later date. 

''Surely the Council could have negotiated a better facade for the station to blend with the local architecture and make more of the station as a gateway to Ealing?”

Liberal Democrat Councillor, Jon Ball, who will be standing for Ealing Central and Acton in the next election, agrees there are still significant issues:

'' The key facility residents expect is escalators. The current Ealing Broadway station has an unpleasant and potentially dangerous crush of passengers (including those with luggage, pushchairs and so on)  attempting to go up and down between the three levels - street, booking hall and the main platform area.  

'' The broader point is interchange. A large proportion of passengers using Ealing Broadway are on bus/train or bus/tube journeys. While the station itself is being rebuilt, the proposal for the bus side of the equation (which is being put forward seperately) is for a few of the bus stops to be moved short distances but for them to still be distributed apparently at random around Haven Green. The opportunity should have been taken to incorporate a bus station to make a proper interchange station like at Hammersmith.

'' Finally, the design proposed is bland and unsympathetic to it's surroundings, wasting the opportunity to create a landmark building. Crossrail's failure to have an independent design review of this station, which the central London Crossrail stations did benefit from unfortunately shows.''

Work on the station is expected to start in October 2015 and last around 14 months, the station will remain open during the work. 

When Crossrail fully opens in 2019, up to ten services an hour in each direction will serve Ealing Broadway.

The official consultation period ends 10th January but the council will accept representations until the planning committee considers the application. 

What do you think? Discuss on the forum.

9th January 2014