The first half of the gleaming new concourse at Birmingham New Street station has opened to passengers.
Staff at the station have bid farewell to old cramped surroundings and celebrated the completion of the first phase of the project to transform the station. A team of over a thousand rail staff have been on site working around the clock to create the new station, which is already one-and-a-half times larger than the old concourse.
Says Dyan Crowther, Network Rail route managing director, ‘Birmingham New Street is the busiest interchange station on Britain’s rail network and with this new concourse it’s finally getting the facilities that it needs and deserves.
‘We are delighted to welcome passengers to their new station. It’s bigger and brighter with much better access to all platforms, making getting around the station easier for everyone.’
This is the first major change to New Street in over 40 years. The station now looks bright and clean. Now the new concourse has opened, the Network Rail and Mace delivery team will turn its attention to redeveloping the old station concourse and the remainder of the Pallasades shopping centre.
The centre will be transformed into a new fashion and lifestyle shopping destination, Grand Central Birmingham. This will incorporate a four storey John Lewis store, over 40 more shops and more than 15 cafes and restaurants.
A small army of volunteers from Network Rail and train operators worked on the station helping delighted passengers find their way around the new concourse.