• Our booking engine at tickets.railforums.co.uk (powered by TrainSplit) helps support the running of the forum with every ticket purchase! Find out more and ask any questions/give us feedback in this thread!

Gatwick Airport station upgrade

thelem

Member
Joined
17 Mar 2008
Messages
550
I'm surprised there isn't a current thread for this, although the upgrade was discussed in https://www.railforums.co.uk/thread...tion-fit-for-purpose-any-future-plans.187081/, but that was before work started and is now locked.

Official sources with plans include:
https://www.networkrail.co.uk/runni...on-main-line/gatwick-airport-station-upgrade/

In summary, they will:
  • Demolish the current escalators / lifts used for exit from platforms 5 and 6.
  • Build a new concourse in their place, that also extends to platform 7 and includes a gateline to the car park (possibly exit-only).
  • Widen platforms 5 and 6, using space that was left when they built platform 7. In other words, move the line for platform 6 so that it runs tight next to the line for platform 7, and extend platform 6 into the gap left.
  • Exit to the airport will be unchanged, using the existing bridges over platforms 1 to 4.
  • The existing concourse building for passengers travelling from the airport to the station will remain, with additional ticket gates and ticket machines (based on the planning permission - https://planningregister.crawley.gov.uk/Document/Download?module=PLA&recordNumber=58005&planId=90417&imageId=100417&isPlan=True&fileName=142637-COT-00000-20-DRG-EAR-000008_X01 - Proposed Site Wide Concourse Level Plan.pdf)
  • A lift will be added from the building down to platform 3/4. This means that both buildings will have lifts to all platforms - it will no longer be necessary to enter the airport to change platforms.
The key dates from Network Rail are:
  • Enabling work: track 6 closed, taking platform 6 out of action – 26 April 2020
  • Stage 1: Platform 7 closed – 17 May 2020 – 1 Nov 2020
  • Stage 2: Platforms 5 & 6 closed – 1 Nov 2020 – May 2022
  • Stage 3: Platform 3 & 4 lift and staircase installed – 29 Sept 2020 – March 2023
  • Stage 4: Concourse work – September 2021 – March 2023
  • Completion of remainder of the work: September 2023
The work on Platform 7 was completed on time, and Network Rail tweeted pictures of a Thameslink train checking clearances on Platform 7 following their work, and the building site that they have set up between platform 7 and the car park.

ElU-eqGWMAAtD9w

ElU-uOCXYAArmbi


Network rail have tweeted photos of the demolition work on platform 5/6, and what I assume is a temporary bridge for construction workers.

Thanks to @yorkie for suggesting improvements that I've edited into this post.
 

Attachments

  • access bridge.jpg
    access bridge.jpg
    110.3 KB · Views: 22
  • demolition 1.jpg
    demolition 1.jpg
    173.8 KB · Views: 23
  • demolition 2.jpg
    demolition 2.jpg
    118.4 KB · Views: 25
Last edited:
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

cle

Established Member
Joined
17 Nov 2010
Messages
4,092
It also needs to function as an interchange too - it is a major one for the various routes, especially as less calls at Redhill now - and it is a horrible one.

Air travel will bounce back, and in time, grow again. Gatwick is a majority leisure travel airport too, which will rebound quicker than business travel once vaccines etc are common place. I think we will in time see BA and maybe even Virgin/Delta back.
 

Horizon22

Established Member
Associate Staff
Jobs & Careers
Joined
8 Sep 2019
Messages
7,671
Location
London
The way things are now at Gatwick, none of this will be needed for forseeable future.

Perhaps (but still probably useful as this will have a life-span of decades), but the railway doesn't plan infrastructure works on such a short horizon. Gatwick improvements have been in the planning for years, far before Covid was even a word.

Hopefully whatever improvements stop people congregating at the bottom of escalators; it was also a major boarding constraint and staff never used to be very proactive to get people to move along platforms, even when a 12-car shows up.
 

Minstral25

Established Member
Joined
10 Sep 2009
Messages
1,780
Location
Surrey
It also needs to function as an interchange too - it is a major one for the various routes, especially as less calls at Redhill now - and it is a horrible one.

Air travel will bounce back, and in time, grow again. Gatwick is a majority leisure travel airport too, which will rebound quicker than business travel once vaccines etc are common place. I think we will in time see BA and maybe even Virgin/Delta bac

Interchange is true but the improvements does not include any work on the slow line platforms 1-3 (or Northbound fast 4) except a new lift on 3/4. So these platforms will still have cramped access, narrow sections and general dinginess. At least when you have accessed upstairs you may get some benefit but generally little or no improvement for interchanging passengers which is around 1.3m interchanges per annum and growing.

Lots of improvement for Airport passengers which may keep platforms clearer though.
 

talldave

Established Member
Joined
24 Jan 2013
Messages
2,190
I flew in through Gatwick last week and hopped on a Thameslink home. The whole place would benefit from being brighter.

As an aside, it seems illogical that they're only using the North Terminal at the moment, when the rail station's at the South Terminal.
 

JonathanH

Veteran Member
Joined
29 May 2011
Messages
18,969
As an aside, it seems illogical that they're only using the North Terminal at the moment, when the rail station's at the South Terminal.
It doesn't seem probable that the location of the railway station is the only determinant of which terminal to use. In any case, the only departures I can find for 24 November seem to be a Ryanair flight to Dublin at 0850 and an Air Baltic flight to Tallinn at 1530.
 

AndyW33

Member
Joined
12 Aug 2013
Messages
534
I flew in through Gatwick last week and hopped on a Thameslink home. The whole place would benefit from being brighter.

As an aside, it seems illogical that they're only using the North Terminal at the moment, when the rail station's at the South Terminal.
During the first lockdown they did indeed use only South Terminal. As flights restarted in quantity they switched over to using North, probably because Easyjet is by far the largest airline at Gatwick and has specialised non-moveable check-in and other equipment installed in North which was necessary to its operations. Now the South long stay car park is being used as a COVID testing centre and moving that would cause significant disruption at a time when maximum testing capacity is needed.
 

Fincra5

Established Member
Joined
6 Jun 2009
Messages
2,490
The way things are now at Gatwick, none of this will be needed for forseeable future.
Always makes me laugh. People seem to think that all these infrastructure projects and rolling stock investments are all done for short-term benefit.

Gatwick has been in dire need of improvements to passenger flow for the last decade or so. Travel is always going to bounce back...
 

Bald Rick

Veteran Member
Joined
28 Sep 2010
Messages
29,261
Always makes me laugh. People seem to think that all these infrastructure projects and rolling stock investments are all done for short-term benefit.

Gatwick has been in dire need of improvements to passenger flow for the last decade or so. Travel is always going to bounce back...

Indeed. Next year, when the vaccine is (presumably) working and travel restrictions ease, it’s reasonable to assume that air traffic will fairly rapidly get back to something around 70-80% of what it was. That puts passenger numbers at Gatwick back to where they were around 2011-13
 

Surreyman

Member
Joined
29 Jan 2012
Messages
957
I am curious as to where all the new stairs/escalators/lifts will be located, we know that one new lift will be located somewhere near the current station concourse, (Due to be departures only in the future) to serve platforms 3/4.
I assume that as platforms 5/6 are destined to be mainly Gatwick express platforms and platform 7 is the main 'down' platform, that the new arrivals concourse above 5/6 & 7 will have most of the new escalators and lifts in order to empty theses platforms of large numbers of arriving passengers & their luggage as fast as possible.
I have viewed the 'Artists illustrations' available, clearly there are new exit escalators shown from P5/6 & 7 but it is unclear how many?
Current plans/diagrams show that for access, Platforms 5/6 have 1 escalator, 1 stair & 1 lift (There is a second lift on P5/6 where the new concourse is to built, presumably replaced by new for exit only)?
If the future new arrangement for Gatwick Station is effectively one-way access - Tickets and departure access to platforms via the rebuilt current station concourse, with all arrivals exiting via new concourse for platforms 5/6 & 7 & the walkway past existing stairs/Escalators/lifts from P1/2/3/4 direct into the South Terminal, passengers for the North Terminal then having to turn right to walk to the 'Shuttle'.
I wonder, will future rail passengers changing trains have to exit via the terminal and then re-enter the station via the revised old concourse?
 

Fincra5

Established Member
Joined
6 Jun 2009
Messages
2,490
I am curious as to where all the new stairs/escalators/lifts will be located, we know that one new lift will be located somewhere near the current station concourse, (Due to be departures only in the future) to serve platforms 3/4.
I assume that as platforms 5/6 are destined to be mainly Gatwick express platforms and platform 7 is the main 'down' platform, that the new arrivals concourse above 5/6 & 7 will have most of the new escalators and lifts in order to empty theses platforms of large numbers of arriving passengers & their luggage as fast as possible.
I have viewed the 'Artists illustrations' available, clearly there are new exit escalators shown from P5/6 & 7 but it is unclear how many?
Current plans/diagrams show that for access, Platforms 5/6 have 1 escalator, 1 stair & 1 lift (There is a second lift on P5/6 where the new concourse is to built, presumably replaced by new for exit only)?
If the future new arrangement for Gatwick Station is effectively one-way access - Tickets and departure access to platforms via the rebuilt current station concourse, with all arrivals exiting via new concourse for platforms 5/6 & 7 & the walkway past existing stairs/Escalators/lifts from P1/2/3/4 direct into the South Terminal, passengers for the North Terminal then having to turn right to walk to the 'Shuttle'.
I wonder, will future rail passengers changing trains have to exit via the terminal and then re-enter the station via the revised old concourse?
The link from the first post of the thread has a PDF of the plans and shows the stuff is located. The floor plan doesn't look how I expected!

I've attached the PDF.
 

Attachments

  • 142637-COT-00000-20-DRG-EAR-000008_X01 - Proposed Site Wide Concourse Level Plan.pdf
    1.1 MB · Views: 101

thelem

Member
Joined
17 Mar 2008
Messages
550
I hadn't spotted the new lift on platform 3/4. It is to the north of the existing concourse, roughly in line with the existing lifts for platforms 1/2 and 7. That, combined with the new lift for platform 7 in the new concourse, means that both concourses will have lifts to all platforms. That's a big improvement over today for connecting passengers, who often have to move between the two concourses if they want to use the lifts.

The architectural plans show two lifts, three up escalators and one down escalator between platform 7 and the new concourse, with the same for platform 5/6, so these platforms should clear much faster than they do currently.

I don't see them enforcing a strict departures only / arrivals only separation, it's just that each concourse is tailored for one type of traffic based on the escalator direction, ticket gate direction and facilities available (ticket sales in the Station Entrance Concourse, but not the Airport Entrance Concourse). This already happens to some extent with the previous layout, except the lack of lifts for platforms 3/4 and 7 making changing between these platforms difficult.
 

Mag_seven

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Global Moderator
Joined
1 Sep 2014
Messages
10,061
Location
here to eternity
I hadn't spotted the new lift on platform 3/4. It is to the north of the existing concourse, roughly in line with the existing lifts for platforms 1/2 and 7. That, combined with the new lift for platform 7 in the new concourse, means that both concourses will have lifts to all platforms. That's a big improvement over today for connecting passengers, who often have to move between the two concourses if they want to use the lifts.

The architectural plans show two lifts, three up escalators and one down escalator between platform 7 and the new concourse, with the same for platform 5/6, so these platforms should clear much faster than they do currently.

I don't see them enforcing a strict departures only / arrivals only separation, it's just that each concourse is tailored for one type of traffic based on the escalator direction, ticket gate direction and facilities available (ticket sales in the Station Entrance Concourse, but not the Airport Entrance Concourse). This already happens to some extent with the previous layout, except the lack of lifts for platforms 3/4 and 7 making changing between these platforms difficult.

Thread reopened to allow @ParanDark to provide an update.
 

InOban

Established Member
Joined
12 Mar 2017
Messages
4,226
There's a detailed description on the Ianvisits website today. Sorry can't insert a link just now.
 

ParanDark

Member
Joined
13 Oct 2018
Messages
7
Update

New concourse will open on Tuesday 21st November 2023 and detailed description provided by ianvists.

"The bottleneck is caused by Gatwick Airport station itself.

The station sits on the busy Brighton Main Line between London and Brighton. If there’s a problem at Gatwick, it can cause problems that cascade along the Thameslink and Southern services, and the effect can be surprisingly widespread.

Gatwick Airport station can cause delays because the station is busy and getting busier, but has narrow platforms and a limited way to get off the platforms. When trains arrive, disgorging luggage laden passengers, they can take a while to slowly funnel up the stairs and escalator to get off the platform. If the platforms are busy with passengers, then the train dispatch staff have to delay the train from leaving until there’s enough space on the platform for the train to be able to leave safely.

In addition, if a platform is busy, until recently, it’s been difficult to shift an approaching train onto another platform so the trains may have to queue to get into the station.

That’s the cause of the delays, and a minute or two delay at Gatwick can mean a train missing its slot on the approach to London and delayed even more until space is available, which can mean even longer delays in the busy Thameslink corridor through central London.

That’s why a delay at Gatwick can mean a late train at Cambridge.


The problem identified: how is Network Rail fixing it?


They will fix it by adding a new entrance to the station, although it’s a very big entrance, and will radically change how people use the station. Currently, there’s pretty much a conventional large station, with seven platforms and a concourse built above the station that connects to the airport. It’s a station that wouldn’t look out of place in any major city.

What has happened is that a second concourse has been built next to the old one above the station. When it opens, passengers will use the new concourse to leave trains, and the old concourse will be dedicated to people arriving to catch trains."

 
Last edited:

aleggatta

Member
Joined
28 Sep 2015
Messages
546
Out of curiosity, which platform (out of 4 and 7) has been made bi-directional, and what track alterations were made to facilitate it?
 

ParanDark

Member
Joined
13 Oct 2018
Messages
7
Out of curiosity, which platform (out of 4 and 7) has been made bi-directional, and what track alterations were made to facilitate it?
There was a video released last year "Preparation for Gatwick Redevelopment" with more details about the project, I'm not sure if it was mentioned in the video as I don't have the time to check currently but there were definitely some detailed layout pictures.
The link to the video is below. This video is from the IRSE and ZOOM meeting with Mathew Stuart and Sam Mitchell who go over the station design, how the new passenger concourse will be constructed, the new track layout and the speed/reliability benefits of it.

 
Last edited:

Peregrine 4903

Established Member
Joined
18 Aug 2019
Messages
1,457
Location
London
Out of curiosity, which platform (out of 4 and 7) has been made bi-directional, and what track alterations were made to facilitate it?
Only Platform 5 is bi-directional. 4 is up only and 7 is down only.

6 is down but you can turn trains back from the South in Platform 6.

1,2 and 3 are fully bi-directional.
 

dastocks

Member
Joined
3 Nov 2021
Messages
179
Location
Hove
Out of curiosity, which platform (out of 4 and 7) has been made bi-directional, and what track alterations were made to facilitate it?
5 and 6 definitely and these are currently used almost exclusively for up and down services respectively. The platform island was widened and the platform 6 loop connects to the previously installed track for platform 7 rather than being a loop from the old down fast that ran through platform 5. I believe non-stop services could run through platform 6 at 70mph if required. There is an additional crossover south of the station to allow up services to call at platform 5. The track diagram on OpenTrainTimes does not show this layout correctly.
 

Peregrine 4903

Established Member
Joined
18 Aug 2019
Messages
1,457
Location
London
5 and 6 definitely and these are currently used almost exclusively for up and down services respectively. The platform island was widened and the platform 6 loop connects to the previously installed track for platform 7 rather than being a loop from the old down fast that ran through platform 5. I believe non-stop services could run through platform 6 at 70mph if required. There is an additional crossover south of the station to allow up services to call at platform 5. The track diagram on OpenTrainTimes does not show this layout correctly.
6 is not bi-directional.

The way the track layout is designed now is that down services use Platforms 6 and 7 and up services use Platforms 5 and 4. Platform 5 is fully bi-directional so can be used for both up/down services and services teminating at Gatwick in both direction. Platfrom 6 can be used for services terminating and turning back from the south only. There is no set of points that allows you to get to the Up Fast from Platform 6 in the Up direction unless you went wrong road all the way to Earlswood.
 

whoosh

Established Member
Joined
3 Sep 2008
Messages
1,386
Out of curiosity, which platform (out of 4 and 7) has been made bi-directional, and what track alterations were made to facilitate it?
Neither of those are bi-directional.

1,2, and 3 are bi-directional (and haven't been altered).

4 is Up only (Up fast).

5 (Down Fast) is bi-directional, and as the Up Fast linespeed has been reduced (slower than the slow lines through the station now!) there's only a 10mph difference through the crossover into platform 5 in the Up direction now, so Up trains can be routed on greens all the way into 5 rather than checked down. So this has sped up Up trains calling at Gatwick and they use 4 and 5 alternately. [Whilst the Down Fast is platform 5, it is now mainly used for Up trains].

Platform 6 is for Down trains, but there is a fixed red at the north end so Up trains can terminate, but must return in the southbound (down) direction.

Platform 7 is down only.

Again, there has been a reduction in linespeed on the Down Fast, and so there is again a 10mph reduction to diverge into platform 6 or 7, so this can now also be done on green signals all the way, and down trains alternate between these two platforms.

Platform 7 used to have flashing yellows from the down fast, but now as you can go into 7 on greens, the flashing yellows apply for the route going over towards platforms 1,2, or 3 instead.


Hope that makes sense!
 
Last edited:

Peregrine 4903

Established Member
Joined
18 Aug 2019
Messages
1,457
Location
London
Neither of those are bi-directional.

1,2, and 3 are bi-directional (and haven't been altered).

4 is Up only (Up fast).

5 (Down Fast) is bi-directional, and as the Up Fast linespeed has been reduced (slower than the slow lines through the station now!) there's only a 10mph difference through the crossover into platform 5 in the Up direction now, so Up trains can be routed on greens all the way into 5 rather than checked down. So this has sped up Up trains calling at Gatwick and they use 4 and 5 alternately. [Whilst the Down Fast is platform 5, it is now mainly used for Up trains].

Platform 6 is for Down trains, but there is a fixed red at the north end so Up trains can terminate, but must return in the southbound (down) direction.

Platform 7 is down only.

Again, there has been a reduction in linespeed on the Down Fast, and so there is again a 10mph reduction to diverge into platform 6 or 7, so this can now also be done on green signals all the way, and down trains alternate between these two platforms.

Platform 7 used to have flashing yellows from the down fast, but now as you can go into 7 on greens, the flashing yellows apply for the route going over towards platforms 1,2, or 3 instead.


Hope that makes sense!
Up trains stopping at Platform 5 are 1 minute slower than up trains using Platform 4 as there is a slow crossover when departing Platform 5 to rejoin the Up Fast.
 

bubieyehyeh

Member
Joined
25 Feb 2016
Messages
321
I flew in through Gatwick last week and hopped on a Thameslink home. The whole place would benefit from being brighter.

As an aside, it seems illogical that they're only using the North Terminal at the moment, when the rail station's at the South Terminal.
Ive flown from south terminal in recent months.
 

cle

Established Member
Joined
17 Nov 2010
Messages
4,092
It looks very 'European' - the black and yellow. Like it, a serious station.
 

Top