Underground stations set to smarten up

New facilities to brighten up old stations

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Piccadilly Line passengers waiting for their trains at South Ealing will have nicer surroundings in which to pass their time from next Summer.

Tube Lines, the company upgrading the Underground’s busiest lines, will upgrade the station as part of their £550 million station improvements programme. Work will also be carried out on Alperton, Park Royal and Hounslow Central. Work at these stations is scheduled for completion in summer 2006 bringing the total number of upgraded Piccadilly line stations to 15.

Every night when the last passenger trains have passed through, teams of up to 70 people will be setting to work at each station to make the refurbishment plans a reality. Station users will benefit from new Train Indicator Displays on each platform and new electronic information panels providing them with up-to-date travel information. Improvements will also be made to the stairs and floor surfaces to assist the visually impaired, and the Public Address system throughout these stations will have ambient noise controls built in so announcements can be heard as trains enter the stations. Surface finishes will be upgraded and floor tiling in hard-wearing areas of the stations will be replaced helping to make the stations look and feel brighter.

Carrying out major upgrade work to a Tube station during limited engineering hours brings with it its own unique construction challenges. The nightly routine of delivering materials to the station, setting up the site for work followed at the end of each night with the removal of materials and the testing and re-commissioning of the station facilities shaves off at least 1.5 hours leaving just 3 hours to carry out actual work. Putting in place a detailed daily timetable of works is essential to ensure that every minute of time worked is productive.

Speaking about the station upgrade programme, Alan O’Dowd, Project Manager Tube Lines, said:

“The investment in this station programme will deliver significant and tangible improvements to London Underground and its passengers. The stations themselves will look and feel brighter and the introduction of new technology means there will be more information and better safety for customers.

“We have already completed the upgrade of 4 Piccadilly Line stations and now have 11 more stations under construction on this line. This work is just another step for Tube Lines as we deliver massive improvements to London Underground.”

Tube Lines’ £4.4 billion investment programme is already delivering improvements for the 529,000 passengers who use the Piccadilly Line daily. Tube Lines has already completed the upgrade of four stations on this line, including Northfields, South Harrow, Arnos Grove and Sudbury Town and now has modernisation work in progress at eleven Piccadilly Line stations. 14 kilometres of track has been renewed to improve the condition of the track and ride quality for passengers and following a £20 million investment in the fleet the number of delays to passenger services has been halved.


Nov 26 2005