A multi-million-pound project to improve accessibility for passengers at Mills Hill station in Greater Manchester has started this week.
On behalf of Network Rail, Story Contracting are delivering the upgrades which form part of the Government’s ‘Access for All’ scheme.
The investment will see Story build a new ramp built on the Manchester-bound platform and a new lift and staircase installed on the Rochdale-bound side.
This will help customers with reduced mobility, families with prams and those carrying heavy luggage.
Simon Smith, sponsor for Network Rail, said: “Work is now underway to make it easier for passengers to access Mills Hill station, providing step-free access to both platforms for the first time.
“We are working closely with the station operator, Northern, to ensure our work brings as little disruption as possible to neighbours and passengers.”
Story Contracting recently joined Network Rail and Northern at a community drop-in to answer questions and queries from the local residents.
Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said: “Greater Manchester’s railways are an essential part of our public transport network, but far too many of our stations are inaccessible to people with reduced mobility or families with prams.
“If we are going to get more people out of their cars and onto our trains we need to make them easier to use, so I’m pleased that this work has started at Mills Hill, which will provide much needed step free access to both platforms.”
There will be no disruption to train services while work takes place and a temporary bridge will be built for passengers between the two platforms.
Due to the limited space at the station, temporary buildings for the Story team have to be located in the station car park. This means there will be no parking available until the end of March 2020.
Passengers and residents can contact Network Rail’s 24-hour national helpline on 03457 11 41 41 to find out more.
The major station upgrade is due to be finished by the end of March 2020 and has been funded by the Department of Transport’s ‘Access for All’ programme.
The accessibility improvements also form part of Network Rail’s wider Great North Rail Project – a rail industry effort to deliver better stations, track and trains across the North by 2020.