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London train stations listed for overcrowding

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A number of major London railway stations should take action to reduce overcrowding, according to a report.

London’s Charing Cross, Fenchurch Street and Victoria are on Network Rail’s (NR) list of train stations which should identify measures needed to cut passenger congestion before 2019.

Clapham Junction, Surbiton and Wimbledon are also on the list of railway stations which require attention.

NR’s list does not include stations where plans to reduce congestion are already in place, such as Farringdon and Paddington.

The report said: “Many of the stations that were nominated… already have committed schemes in hand, or planned, which will resolve the issue.

“For example, the Thameslink Programme and Crossrail will address congestion at Farringdon, and IEP (the Intercity Express Programme), TfL (Transport for London) investment and Crossrail will address congestion at London Paddington.”

A list of stations with long-term plans to deal with overcrowding but which might not be fully committed or developed has also been published by NR. It includes London’s Euston, Tottenham Hale, Barking and Finsbury Park train stations.

A variety of measures have been suggested to help railway stations cut congestion. These range from building more space into stations to “soft” options such as relocating information points and encouraging commuters to print tickets at home.

On-train counting systems already exist, NR said, but how sophisticated they are varies. The number of people at stations who are not travelling is not systematically or routinely counted, it said.

But NR added: “There is not a direct correlation between the number of station users and the level of congestion observed.

“So merely analysing which stations have the greatest numbers of users will not of itself highlight where crowding is a particular difficulty.”

NR’s group strategy director Paul Plummer said: “A successful railway station should add to the passenger experience as well as support the economic, social and environmental benefits of rail.

“As more and more people choose to travel by rail, it’s vital that passenger congestion is tackled or some stations risk becoming victims of their own success.

“Working with our partners from across the rail industry, we have identified a number of stations that would benefit from cost-effective measures to reduce congestion and improve the travelling experience for passengers.”




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