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Expanding Deansgate vs Piccadilly platforms 15/16

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Philip

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As there doesn't seem to much progress being made with the building of platforms 15 and 16 at Manchester Piccadilly, could an alternative option be to look at expanding Deansgate Station to include two new west-facing bay platforms, build to the south of the station over the back street? I don't know exactly but there seems to be enough space there to build two new terminating lines/platforms.

If this happened, which of the current services would be good to terminate to Deansgate, to ease capacity further east along the corridor and potentially also at Victoria? The two Liverpool CLC stoppers? All trains that have come from Southport, Kirkby and Wigan? The TfW service?

Would something like this make a big difference in easing track capacity, bearing in mind trains would still have to cross Ordsall and Castlefield Junctions?


There is of course an old and big ex railway station nearby which still looks in good nick and would hold many more trains, albeit currently being used as an exhibition centre and needing a a new stretch of line to be built to access it.
 
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Jorge Da Silva

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As there doesn't seem to much progress being made with the building of platforms 15 and 16 at Manchester Piccadilly, could an alternative option be to look at expanding Deansgate Station to include two new west-facing bay platforms, build to the south of the station over the back street? I don't know exactly but there seems to be enough space there to build two new terminating lines/platforms.

If this happened, which of the current services would be good to terminate to Deansgate, to ease capacity further east along the corridor and potentially also at Victoria? The two Liverpool CLC stoppers? All trains that have come from Southport, Kirkby and Wigan? The TfW service?

Would something like this make a big difference in easing track capacity, bearing in mind trains would still have to cross Ordsall and Castlefield Junctions?


There is of course an old and big ex railway station nearby which still looks in good nick and would hold many more trains, albeit currently being used as an exhibition centre and needing a a new stretch of line to be built to access it.

firstly there is more space at Oxford road for bay platforms, secondly deansgate is half-the problem with not all services stopping there. Plus Piccadilly is a far better interchange
 

cle

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There seems a pretty good consensus that the TfW services should go to Victoria first. That addresses one (short, diesel - i.e. less path-worthy) - service.
 

Philip

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There seems a pretty good consensus that the TfW services should go to Victoria first. That addresses one (short, diesel - i.e. less path-worthy) - service.

But Victoria must be close to full capacity now on the through platforms?
 

Purple Orange

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If platforms are to be built anywhere, it should be at either Piccadilly or Victoria, plus the additional through platforms at Salford Crescent. In an ideal world, all long distance services would be taken away from the Castlefield Corridor and everything between Victoria and Piccadilly stops at Salford Central, Deansgate and Oxford Road.
 

cle

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But Victoria must be close to full capacity now on the through platforms?
I don't think so - four through platforms can handle way more. Think about P13/14! Especially when the pairs are judiciously paired for Rochdale and Staly (or Ordsall/Crescent).

But for turning, it's trickier. Western facing bays would be helpful, for sure.
 

Bletchleyite

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I don't think so - four through platforms can handle way more. Think about P13/14! Especially when the pairs are judiciously paired for Rochdale and Staly (or Ordsall/Crescent).

But for turning, it's trickier. Western facing bays would be helpful, for sure.

There is ample room for 3-4 west facing bays up against the Arena, if you look at an aerial view. I think they could really do with building them, though if the new Arena causes the old one to fail knocking down the lot and rebuilding a proper Hauptbahnhof with say 8 long (min 11x24m so you could take a Pendolino in there if you needed? Perhaps ideally 12x24m plus a bit so you could terminate 6.195 in there in two directions if needs be?) through platforms suitable for both terminating and running through would be preferable.
 

Trackman

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Isn’t Deansgate on a sort of viaduct?
It is.
There is of course an old and big ex railway station nearby which still looks in good nick and would hold many more trains, albeit currently being used as an exhibition centre and needing a a new stretch of line to be built to access it.
Yes, there is indeed with Metrolink opposite.
Always thought they are missing a trick there.
How it could be utilised is a different matter, but there is scope to develop around there.
 

Purple Orange

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It is.

Yes, there is indeed with Metrolink opposite.
Always thought they are missing a trick there.
How it could be utilised is a different matter, but there is scope to develop around there.

At the same time, the old Central Station is now a successful conference and exhibition centre, while at the moment it is intended for a rather more important task.
 

Purple Orange

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The problems with this plan are the customers want to go to Oxford road or Piccadilly then the airport, the demand for Victoria is low. So having to change at NLW will not be very popular at all, especially with luggage.
Plus once the services end at a very congested Victoria what do they do next ? As it's either a quick turnaround or stable a place further along the route to return right time.
As from December all TFW services will be going to the airport unless they are a quick turnaround service, as network rail don't want the Mayfield loop being used from December !

I’m not too sure about that. Victoria is far better placed for everything that is going on around Angel Square, the Northern Quarter, Spinningfields & Deansgate is reached easier from Victoria than Piccadilly, the majority of the shopping area and also the arena!
 

Purple Orange

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Well if I had my way I would close Deansgate - but hey ho.

No!!! Deansgate will have an excellent role once we can get the long distance services off the line. Everything that stops at Piccadilly P14 should stop at Oxford Road & Deansgate. And if going to Victoria, stop at Salford Central. Regional stoppers only.
 

Amstel

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I use Deansgate regularly but it's more trouble than it's worth. Close it.
 

cle

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The demand problem for Victoria is all perception. It used to be the arse-end of nowhere for trains to Oldham. And a lot of people still think of it like that. Edge of the earth.

Manchester has both grown in absolute terms, and evolved - even since the Printworks and Selfridges/HN developments. And then the NQ exploded. Now Ancoats and all the breweries in the arches etc etc - and the Met expansions.

Deansgate and even Spinningfields and that whole area is closer to Victoria than Piccadilly. Maybe not Oxford. Road and of course Deansgate is closer. But that is where a reborn Salford Central comes into play - plus all those New Bailey jobs/devts.
 

JKF

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At the same time, the old Central Station is now a successful conference and exhibition centre, while at the moment it is intended for a rather more important task.

Subterranean platforms on the Picc-Cent tunnel is the obvious solution. :)
 

ARIC

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Deansgate is a fantastic station for connectivity to Metrolink - the walk from Oxford Road to St Peter's Square feels like much more of a faff - and it's vastly superior to Piccadilly when it comes to the number of lines served. I think that's it's real place in the future of the cities transport system.
 

Purple Orange

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Deansgate is a fantastic station for connectivity to Metrolink - the walk from Oxford Road to St Peter's Square feels like much more of a faff - and it's vastly superior to Piccadilly when it comes to the number of lines served. I think that's it's real place in the future of the cities transport system.

This all day long. I’d go further and say the future of Oxford Road station is as a metro station (not necessarily metrolink, but certainly on a regional metro network). The whole network of lines going through central Manchester will form the spine of a metro system, that will probably extend to towns like Blackpool, Southport, Blackburn, Bradford, Buxton, Stoke, Crewe, the airport, Chester & N. Wales and Liverpool stoppers.
 

Bletchleyite

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This all day long. I’d go further and say the future of Oxford Road station is as a metro station (not necessarily metrolink, but certainly on a regional metro network). The whole network of lines going through central Manchester will form the spine of a metro system, that will probably extend to towns like Blackpool, Southport, Blackburn, Bradford, Buxton, Stoke, Crewe, the airport, Chester & N. Wales and Liverpool stoppers.

Agreed - in that case you'd have everything stopping at all three Castlefield stations. It is rather predicated on an alternative being built, though - either bin the Arena and rebuild Vic to double the capacity, or a city centre tunnel for express/IC services.
 

Purple Orange

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Agreed - in that case you'd have everything stopping at all three Castlefield stations. It is rather predicated on an alternative being built, though - either bin the Arena and rebuild Vic to double the capacity, or a city centre tunnel for express/IC services.
It depends on how much NPR and a city centre tram-train tunnel comes along. The CLC, Atherton, Marple and Glossop & Hadfield lines wouldn’t touch Castlefield. NPR (even if just a link feeding in to a reversal at Piccadilly from the south can take all long-distance services away from Castlefield & Victoria too. Plus all long distance services from the south terminate in Piccadilly. I doubt the arena will go, but as you’ve said on here before, additional bays can be built at Victoria.
 

Bletchleyite

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what are the chances of the arena being closed though?

We'll have to see if (once gigs and stuff return) Manchester is big enough to support two major arenas plus the two big footy stadia which can be used as outdoor "arenas" outside the football season. I'm not sure that it is, to be honest. And the Nynex (or whatever it's called this week; that's what it was when I was growing up) is quite old now and probably needing a bit of a tarting up at least.

So I reckon Eastlands will kill it, the question would be how quickly.

If it does, that's a major opportunity to build Victoria into a second "proper" major station for Manchester (I'd envisage something looking a bit like Leeds but more modern, perhaps 8 400m through platforms or similar - or maybe like a single "layer" of Berlin Hbf) and then Castlefield can just become an "S-Bahn" like it once sort-of was. If you turn it into something like Thameslink, with everything operated by 3 or 6-car CAF formations (and any replacements or additions specced to have precisely the same door layout), the door positions marked etc, it would have more than enough capacity.

After all, the Merseyrail Loop manages 14tph on a single platform quite happily. And Thameslink probably even more than that with massive numbers of passengers.
 
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Trackman

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We'll have to see if (once gigs and stuff return) Manchester is big enough to support two major arenas plus the two big footy stadia which can be used as outdoor "arenas" outside the football season. I'm not sure that it is, to be honest. And the Nynex (or whatever it's called this week; that's what it was when I was growing up) is quite old now and probably needing a bit of a tarting up at least.

So I reckon Eastlands will kill it, the question would be how quickly.
I can't see it, the Manchester arena is really in the heart of Manchester.
A bit like the 02 Apollo in Manchester just a gentle walk to Piccadilly in 10 minutes.
If it was Eastlands, traffic jams etc.. gawd knows about the trams .. plus I reckon a 30 minute walk to the nearest railway station.
 

Bletchleyite

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I can't see it, the Manchester arena is really in the heart of Manchester.
A bit like the 02 Apollo in Manchester just a gentle walk to Piccadilly in 10 minutes.
If it was Eastlands, traffic jams etc.. gawd knows about the trams .. plus I reckon a 30 minute walk to the nearest railway station.

If Manchester had a train service like London I'd agree, but with last trains out of Manchester to many even local destinations typically before 2300 concerts tend to finish too late just to pop home on the train, so I think that is probably of a lot less importance than you'd think it was.
 

Purple Orange

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concerts have been taking place at the Etihad for several years, with 50-60k crowds. The logistics of people getting away from the arena is really not an issue, just as getting 75,000 people away from Old Trafford on a week night, is not an issue.

There are two big hurdles for an expanded Victoria:
  1. Will the current arena close? I doubt it personally, but there is a chance.
  2. If the arena does close, who says the land will be used for rail? Piccadilly is clearly going to be the focus for all long distance services, with Victoria likely to be no more than a commuter hub.
 

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Until such time as the long-term future of Piccadilly has been determined, with the final option for HS3/NPR not yet settled, I think it's impossible to expect any commitment to grandiose plans for Victoria beyond completing trans-Pennine electrification. In the meantime it's quite possible, post Covid, that the recent trend for yet more apartment buildings could see Victoria hemmed in making meaningful expansion very difficult if not impossible. As such a long-term plan to create more capacity there might need to consider, once more, a cross-city heavy rail tunnel only this time from Salford Crescent to Ardwick/Longsight. Given the needs that already exist in the north's other big cities I doubt such expenditure will be justified for at least 20 years.
 

Purple Orange

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I think people do appreciate that no commitment will be made to any scheme regarding Deansgate, Oxford Road, Piccadilly P15 & P16 or Victoria. We do know there will be an announcement in the Integrated Rail Plan regarding NPR and how it links in to HS2, plus we already know the latest plans announced by HS2 for accommodating NPR services to reverse at Piccadilly and the required junctions at Ardwick and or the Liverpool spur. So with that in mind, we can make reasonable educated guesses.

My educated guess is that nothing will happen to Deansgate, with all eggs in one basket for the plans for Manchester outlined by HS2. It would be very surprising indeed, if the Integrated Rail Plan went completely against the proposals by HS2 to incorporate NPR. We could see the plans for the Northern Hub incorporated in to the Integrated Rail Plan perhaps.
 
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