Brent Cross West escalator installation

Full steam ahead for the VolkerFitzpatrick Brent Cross West team

The VolkerFitzpatrick team building the new Brent Cross West station recently took a step closer to finishing the project by manoeuvring the station’s platform escalators and canopies into place.

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Over a weekend’s work, the team was able to move the project along, while minimising disruption to residents and rail users. A critical step in delivering the project, the twenty-five hour all line isolation was meticulously planned to deliver several activities. With the sky-scraping cranes brought onto site, the team was able to lift and install the three remaining concourse roof beams, and five pre-assembled upper canopies.

As planned, the escalator for the slow southern platform was fully installed, whilst the northern escalator was lifted onto the platform in three sections. Following the weekend works, the escalator sections were installed with the use of machine skates and lifting equipment.

Other works progressed during the weekend included installing copers (edging to the platforms) on the fast platform, with two teams working over two shifts. The cladding on the western overbridge was also advanced and scaffolding was installed to the sides of the concourse.

Like many of the specialist activities on site, it required great planning, skill, and precision to safely coordinate these activities over the railway infrastructure, and within the tight timeframe. Additionally, the teams planned their works to make efficient use of the cranes on site (two 500t and one 200t), plus excavators and forklifts. The project’s progress was captured with drones, making it possible to track the on-site developments digitally using advanced software.

Transforming the aesthetic of the station, the new canopies and escalators give onlookers a hint at what the final station will look like. Progress can be seen from every direction at London’s newest mainline station following the completion of the associated rail infrastructure, foundations, and structural steelwork at the station last year.

Matthew Wilson, VolkerFitzpatrick contracts manager said: “This was our first all line possession since Christmas, so it was crucial to coordinate activities across teams and make sure we made the most of our access. The teams worked well together and made fantastic progress. Thanks to all those involved for their hard work over the weekend.”

Delivered by Barnet Council, in partnership with Network Rail, Brent Cross West, is essential in unlocking the housing and commercial development in the area and will provide a gateway from the new Brent Cross Town development to the rest of London and beyond.

Barnet Council are working with rail partners to agree an opening date which will be announced later in the year.

Find out more about the new Brent Cross West station here, and about the wider station programme here.