Kings Cross Suburban Platforms

bcarmicle

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I was at Kings Cross for the first time in ages today, and noticed that the previous Platform 11 has been renumbered to Platform 10, and the old Platform 10 removed entirely with the track having been lifted up. Is this a permanent change, and how long has it been the case? Is there any operational advantage that comes from removing that platform?
 
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yorkie

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The platforms might be longer? Line speeds are increased and there is greater operational flexibility.

https://www.newcivilengineer.com/th...-track-the-kings-cross-crossovers-29-06-2021/
The project also involved reducing the overall number of platforms from 12 to 11, with platform 10 now replacing the location of platform 11. The simplified alignment will help to boost operational flexibility, with trains now capable of getting in and out of the station quicker.


There was a thread about it: https://www.railforums.co.uk/thread...ucture-discussion-aka-kings-uncrossed.158859/
 

swt_passenger

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The platforms aren’t significantly longer, (9 was 167m, 11 was 170m, both now 172m) but the changes mean the layout of the points and crossings between the suburban platforms and the tunnel are much simpler, using standard components, and slightly higher departure speeds are possible. A minor point was that the original platform 10 & 11 pair were considered too narrow for the number of passengers at peak times. The new setup is supposedly much safer for high passenger numbers.

The overall layout allows far more parallel moves, somewhere in the thread that Yorkie linked to there are before and after side by side drawings. Post #61 there has the link.
 
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Lewlew

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Why didn’t they take the opportunity to renumber Platform 0 to P1? (And step up each platform)
 

Tio Terry

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Why didn’t they take the opportunity to renumber Platform 0 to P1? (And step up each platform)
At a guess, cost. It's not a case of simply changing the platform signage, there are thousands of drawings and plans for things like signalling, OHEL, domestic power, gas pipes, water pipes, sewage and surface water drainage that would all need to be changed. The cost would be enormous and would tie up valuable resources needed for Projects that will bring major benefits to the network.
 

zwk500

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Often asked in the earlier discussions but never explained.
One reason given was they asked the station staff and drivers who said they had got used to it being platform 0 and they were fine with it.

I think there was also a stage where two of the platforms would have had the same number, albeit very briefly, due to the staggered construction.
 

Magdalia

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The 1977 layout at Kings Cross was designed for the original GN suburban electrification to Royston, and there were 2 platforms in the suburban station, numbered 9 and 10. Platform 11 was inserted later: I can't date this exactly but I suspect late 1980s, when electric trains started to run through to Peterborough and Cambridge.

The addition of platform 11 was in a confined space. It required non standard track, a narrow end to the platforms, and movement of signals, including the platform 10 starting signal. It was never a satisfactory arrangement.

In the early years of platform 11 there were a number of instances of drivers confusing the starting signals in platforms 9 and 10, including one that led to a derailment. The platform 9 and 10 starting signals were then fitted with blinkers blocking lines of sight to signals in adjacent platforms.

A minor point was that the original platform 10 & 11 pair were considered too narrow for the number of passengers at peak times. The new setup is supposedly much safer for high passenger numbers.
This was not a minor point. The narrow end to platform 10/11 made it unsafe to allow passengers onto it in advance of the arrival of an incoming service conveying passengers. This led to delays, particularly during times of service disruption.

One other inconvenience was that platform 9 has a "kink" in it almost exactly halfway along. This matters much less now, but in class 365 days joining 2 units in platform 9 was a nightmare. I remember one timetable when the 1730 arrival from Ely and the 1733 arrival from Kings Lynn were booked to join in platform 9 to form the 1745 departure. This rarely departed on time and frequently left half the train behind.

The diversion of many suburban trains to St Pancras has given the opportunity to get rid of the extra platform. I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks it is good riddance!
 

fgwrich

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You can certainly see the extra advantage gained by removing the points at the Canal Tunnel end, though I was always surprised they left it as an island platform, than taking the opportunity to either fill in the removed track and extend the platform out or to change the layout entirely and turn it back into a U shaped set of platforms (admittedly that would have taken longer to do though).
 

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swt_passenger

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At a guess, cost. It's not a case of simply changing the platform signage, there are thousands of drawings and plans for things like signalling, OHEL, domestic power, gas pipes, water pipes, sewage and surface water drainage that would all need to be changed. The cost would be enormous and would tie up valuable resources needed for Projects that will bring major benefits to the network.
Yes, that’s often noted, but in an overall project of this scale including significant alteration of track, OHLE, civils and signalling, then wouldn’t all those types of drawings have to be updated anyway?

[…]
This was not a minor point. The narrow end to platform 10/11 made it unsafe to allow passengers onto it in advance of the arrival of an incoming service conveying passengers. This led to delays, particularly during times of service disruption.
Ah right. I was posting from memory and didn’t want to be too specific, in case someone argued against my understanding! :D I think though the removal of the platform wasn’t exactly highlighted by Network Rail in advance?

I remember all the PR was mostly about the lengthening, then when we averaged it out was balanced by a fair bit of shortening…
 
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Ken H

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There used to be other platforms to the west of the current suburban platforms used by trains from moorgate that had come up Hotel Curve. Trains to moorgate stopped at York Road platform on the other side on the KX layout. I think the portal for that tunnel was where plat 0 is today.
 

Tio Terry

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Yes, that’s often noted, but in an overall project of this scale including significant alteration of track, OHLE, civils and signalling, then wouldn’t all those types of drawings have to be updated anyway?
No.

Anything not directly affected by the works would not be changed for the sake of it.

There are other things to be considered, changing platform numbers means the stations safety plan needs to be revisited and updated, the Fire Service has to be updated, evacuation plan and lots more.
 

ainsworth74

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I think the portal for that tunnel was where plat 0 is today.
Not quite, the portal is about level with the ends of the platforms but it is, as you say, on the platform 0 side of the station. There's a video on YouTube of a fella who had the good fortune of getting to walk through it from Kings Cross to the Thameslink lines:

 

swt_passenger

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[…]
Trains to moorgate stopped at York Road platform on the other side on the KX layout. I think the portal for that tunnel was where plat 0 is today.
The present platform 0 track is on the site of what was a cab rank, the portal for the York Rd curve is completely separate and is still visible further towards the now closed signal box. The cab road would have originally risen up to above the portal. I suspect a majority of the length of the York Rd “curve” is fairly straight and heads down the middle of York Way, (as shown in the linked video above my post), then curving round towards the old Thameslink station more towards the south end of the station, about level with Caledonia St.

But here’s a screen grab from Google St view, theres a service access road heading into the tunnel portal, from the platforms you can see a steel girder structure that’s been added, presumably to shore it all up.
 

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Ken H

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Not quite, the portal is about level with the ends of the platforms but it is, as you say, on the platform 0 side of the station. There's a video on YouTube of a fella who had the good fortune of getting to walk through it from Kings Cross to the Thameslink lines:

Awesome - thanks
does this tunnel have a function today?

but working a steam train in these tight tunnels cant have been fun. The Hotel Curve one was worse, being an up gradient.

I think the split he saw in the movie at 2:42 was to allow trains from York road to go East along the circle, towards Paddington. i think that fell into disuse long long ago.
I assume there was a similar junction somewhere on Hotel Curve to allow trains from paddington to get onto the GN.
 

swt_passenger

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Awesome - thanks
does this tunnel have a function today?

but working a steam train in these tight tunnels cant have been fun. The Hotel Curve one was worse, being an up gradient.

I think the split he saw in the movie at 2:42 was to allow trains from York road to go East along the circle, towards Paddington. i think that fell into disuse long long ago.
I assume there was a similar junction somewhere on Hotel Curve to allow trains from paddington to get onto the GN.
The remaining tunnel only has a useful function in terms of easily accessing the track and some trackside equipment boxes in the short area between old and new Thameslink platforms. If it wasn’t already there I don’t suppose it would be built specially. The corresponding down track, the Hotel Curve, was obliterated by the LU and NR works for the various western ticket hall levels.

The curve at 2.42, was called Maiden Lane curve, for going West towards Paddington, but previous discussions and sources I’ve downloaded a few years ago suggest it might never have actually had track laid. There was no equivalent to it in the other direction.
AIUI the attachment in this post of mine from 2011 shows the situation in 1863, the 1962 texts from Railway Magazine reckon it had been filled in by 1868:
 
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800001

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At a guess, cost. It's not a case of simply changing the platform signage, there are thousands of drawings and plans for things like signalling, OHEL, domestic power, gas pipes, water pipes, sewage and surface water drainage that would all need to be changed. The cost would be enormous and would tie up valuable resources needed for Projects that will bring major benefits to the network.
Exactly as you said!!!
 

YorksLad12

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I was only half paying attention as we pulled in to KX last Tuesday, but is the curve now blocked off? It looked as if some hoarding had been erected, but that might be just beyond the curve opening - it was before P0 though. The former curve always had emergency-style lights at the entrance, which seemed odd for something not in use.
 

4-SUB 4732

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Having done a fair bit of driving into / out of 9-11, let me say:

- The new platforms still can’t take a 12/700.
- The existing platforms coped at rush hour.
- The “non standard” points only failed if Network Rail didn’t look after them (Lewisham etc).
- The speed limits post “untangling Kings Cross” didn’t preclude the use of 9-11.

All you’ve done is lose a platform capable of an 8/700. Useless.
 

bramling

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The remaining tunnel only has a useful function in terms of easily accessing the track and some trackside equipment boxes in the short area between old and new Thameslink platforms. If it wasn’t already there I don’t suppose it would be built specially. The corresponding down track, the Hotel Curve, was obliterated by the LU and NR works for the various western ticket hall levels.

The curve at 2.42, was called Maiden Lane curve, for going West towards Paddington, but previous discussions and sources I’ve downloaded a few years ago suggest it might never have actually had track laid. There was no equivalent to it in the other direction.
AIUI the attachment in this post of mine from 2011 shows the situation in 1863, the 1962 texts from Railway Magazine reckon it had been filled in by 1868:

There is a short section of the Hotel Curve still left, though much of it seems to have been cut through by the LU Northern Ticket Hall. There are two sets of manholes on the paved area out the front of the station - one just in front of the main front entrance to the new concourse, and the other near the corner of Euston Road / York Way. The remaining section runs between these, and is nowadays used for utilities. I presume there’s no longer any connection to the Thameslink tunnel.
 

KenA

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The present platform 0 track is on the site of what was a cab rank, the portal for the York Rd curve is completely separate and is still visible further towards the now closed signal box. The cab road would have originally risen up to above the portal. I suspect a majority of the length of the York Rd “curve” is fairly straight and heads down the middle of York Way, (as shown in the linked video above my post), then curving round towards the old Thameslink station more towards the south end of the station, about level with Caledonia St.

But here’s a screen grab from Google St view, theres a service access road heading into the tunnel portal, from the platforms you can see a steel girder structure that’s been added, presumably to shore it all up.
I think it was a Cab road. It was common for terminus station to have to cab roads . One for arrivals and one for depatures.
The one that is now platform 0 was for cabs comming in to pick upaarivals I think ythey use to turn at the bottom where the cab road continued across ther front of the station

St Pancras had a similr arrangement as did Euston before it was rebuilt
 

swt_passenger

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I was only half paying attention as we pulled in to KX last Tuesday, but is the curve now blocked off? It looked as if some hoarding had been erected, but that might be just beyond the curve opening - it was before P0 though. The former curve always had emergency-style lights at the entrance, which seemed odd for something not in use.
A month or two ago there was a low level temporary looking hoarding across the portal, but it wouldn’t have prevented seeing the upper part of it.
 

KenA

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The Kings Cross area was orginally called battle bridge after a battle which occure near a bridge over the River Fleet

The cuurent name of Kings Cross came about from a statue to King George the IV. THe statue did not long about 10 years Ithink but the name stuck
 

swt_passenger

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I think it was a Cab road. It was common for terminus station to have to cab roads . One for arrivals and one for depatures.
The one that is now platform 0 was for cabs comming in to pick upaarivals I think ythey use to turn at the bottom where the cab road continued across ther front of the station

St Pancras had a similr arrangement as did Euston before it was rebuilt
Yes, cab road was what I meant, I used cab road later in the paragraph. You can see it at the north of the eastern side of the station on old maps.
 

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