Gillespies is delivering major improvements to Ashford station as part of a £2.5bn investment programme in the city’s future.
The first phase of work, due for completion in December, includes the construction of a glazed entrance leading into a forecourt equipped with better facilities. Further improvements to the square – from the extension of the booking hall to the creation of better lighting, toilets and platform waiting areas – will begin in spring 2010.
“It’s a really exciting time to be working in Ashford,” commented Jim Diggle, a partner at Gillespies. “The new square will be a vibrant and attractive addition to the town.”
With high-speed trains now serving Ashford International, the project is designed to transform passengers’ experience of arriving at the station by creating a locally distinctive public realm with better links to the town centre and designer outlet. Improved access for pedestrians and cyclists will also be provided via the subway links beneath the railway.
The project is being undertaken on behalf of Ashford’s Future, together with Southeastern and Network Rail, and is expected to be finalised in spring 2011.
Judith Armitt, managing director of Ashford’s Future, said: “Travellers to Ashford will receive a fitting welcome to the town by arriving at a pleasant, modern-looking building and plaza with excellent connections to the town centre and other key destinations.”