Barking Riverside station train pulls in against blue sky

Barking Riverside extension

Transport for London (TfL) awarded the £196 million contract to a joint venture of VolkerFitzpatrick and Morgan Sindall Construction & Infrastructure (MSVF) to build a new station and modify and realign the existing infrastructure with a 1.5 kilometre viaduct and new railway line.

The new station and infrastructure

The Barking Riverside extension has connected communities in East London by adding 4.5km to the London Overground Gospel Oak to Barking line, terminating at a new elevated station in the main square of the Barking Riverside development.

The new line delivers significant infrastructure, connecting with mainline rail lines, highways, HS1 tunnels, an operational goods yard, as well as a major development.

Read more about the development

Barking Riverside is one of the fastest growing areas of east London. With around 3,000 homes built or under construction, the new railway will help unlock more than 7,000 further homes along with new leisure facilities, schools and riverside walks. This 178-hectare brownfield site on the northern bank of the River Thames will become home to an estimated 30,000 new residents with Barking Riverside station an intrinsic part of the development.

Residents and visitors using the new step-free station can now benefit from quicker and easier journeys. Journey times to Barking have been dramatically cut by more than two thirds to around seven minutes, while the city is now accessible in just 22 minutes.  This helps make London a more accessible city for everyone and supports people's independence when travelling in London.

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The process

The VolkerFitzpatrick team worked on the following:

  • A 4.5km extension to Barking Riverside, between Barking and Dagenham Dock stations to Barking Riverside, including all associated Overhead Line Electrification (OLE), signalling, signalling power, domestic power and telecoms
  • Continuation of the viaduct for a further 1.5km over 56 span sections
  • Reconfiguration of Network Rail’s Ripple Lane goods yard to connect to the Tilbury Loop
  • Construction of a viaduct over the Ripple Lane yard and Tilbury Loop, with foundations constructed between the HS1 tunnels
  • Construction of a new station with step-free access from street to train
  • The station’s façade was constructed using eighty-seven 6.6m high glass panels
  • Demolition of an engine shed, three storey office building, two and three storey buildings, carriage and wagon mess room, and Renwick Road access ramp

Community benefits

Since work began in 2018, the project team has undertaken over £191 million of social value activity to support local schools, sports clubs, community and outreach programmes. These activities have also included several targeted work placement programmes including Get into Transport, Women in Construction and Steps into Work.

Local recruitment

In particular, a focus on inclusive local recruitment has led to over 70 people from diverse backgrounds gaining experience in the UK rail industry, with representation including women, people from minority ethnic backgrounds, those with disabilities, and people who were previously unemployed, leading to positive outlooks for careers within the UK rail industry.

Apprenticeships and work placement

Supported by a dedicated team and social value charter, the project has created 38 apprenticeships, over 1,000 work placement and experience days, and more than 4,000 mentoring hours, as well as engaging with over 1,300 students. In addition, the project has provided £25,000 funds to community programmes.

Riverside Bridge School (sensory garden)

MSVF worked with the school, which serves the special educational needs of 136 children ranging from 4-16 years old, turning an existing, overgrown and unusable, garden, which was never fully accessible, into a sensory/edible garden, fully accessible for staff and students, along with several environmental workshops for students and staff.

Food for the community

Thames View Community Garden

A local council garden, with the objectives of promoting healthy eating, providing community space for families to grow fruit and vegetables. The project faced brownfield challenges, which MSVF helped overcome, by building a series of raised beds (12) and a ‘Bee Hub’. 13 families now use this space.

Barking Food Forest

Aims to provide a safe space for the local community to learn how to grow, prepare and cook food; based on permaculture ethics, earth care, people care and fair share. MSVF supported all three initiatives, with specialist construction expertise, volunteering hours, material reuse, recycling, and donations -monetary and time.

Targeted inclusion programmes

MSVF researched and recognised existing work placement programmes, focusing on diverse, inclusive and local recruitment, featuring specific targets for the UK construction industry. Using existing recruitment avenues, local employment groups, careers fairs and events, social media and interviews, MSVF achieved:
• ‘Women into Construction’ programme – 40 beneficiaries, eight placements and five recruits
• ‘Get into Transport’ programme – 30 beneficiaries, four work placements and one recruit
• ‘Steps into Work’ – young adults with autism - two placements (virtual)


The £221m worth of social value activities included £32,000 given to community fundraising/donations. For example, MSVF completed the Race the Thames fundraiser, participating with several schools, raising over £3,000 for London Youth Rowing. The fundraiser was supported by Andre Triggs-Hodge OBE, who thanked MSVF via video message.



"I'm immensely proud to see this fantastic addition to our public transport network at Barking Riverside. It will make a real difference to so many people's lives and it is also a clear example of the importance of investment in transport - it's the key to unlock skills, jobs and homes. It's a great credit to all those who worked on the project that we have been able to open the station months earlier than planned and I would like to thank all our partners for their collaborative efforts, including the MSVF joint venture of Morgan Sindall Infrastructure and VolkerFitzpatrick, Network Rail and Arriva Rail London."

Andy Byford, London's Transport Commissioner