Some form of heating at King's Cross in the winter.

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Harlesden

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I am a creature of habit, always arriving at the terminal station a good 20 minutes before departure time. My trips to Leeds are always by early morning trains 05:50, 06:30 or 07:05 to make the most of my first day (of three) there. I don't travel in December, but in January and February, the departures concourse at King's Cross is totally freezing early in the morning.
Is there any chance of Network Rail eventually deciding to secure the perimeter with doors that open only when people are entering and install some form of heat for early morning departing passengers.
 
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najaB

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Is there any chance of Network Rail eventually deciding to secure the perimeter with doors that open only when people are entering and install some form of heat for early morning departing passengers.
Not likely, at least in the short to medium term. I've not spent any time wandering around Kings Cross lately, isn't there a waiting room?
 

FOH

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I find it hard to believe that any London concourse is colder than the new London Bridge. All the staff wear heavy jackets and wooly hats and cluster under little square bar heaters.
 

HowardGWR

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This is a very relevant topic and every time I read 'the magnificent Victorian overall roof is to be restored', I groan. When one considers the welcoming ambience of airports, these cathedrals of draughts compare badly.

Once steam and diesel has been eradicated from a station, there is no excuse for not sealing off the platform areas and conditioning the air in them, as in underground systems where doors open when the train arrives.

The only time airports fall down is when one does not have an elephant's trunk to connect to the plane and one has to cross the tarmac, Airfields are the coldest places known to man.
 

DarloRich

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This is a very relevant topic and every time I read 'the magnificent Victorian overall roof is to be restored', I groan. When one considers the welcoming ambience of airports, these cathedrals of draughts compare badly.

Once steam and diesel has been eradicated from a station, there is no excuse for not sealing off the platform areas and conditioning the air in them, as in underground systems where doors open when the train arrives.

The only time airports fall down is when one does not have an elephant's trunk to connect to the plane and one has to cross the tarmac, Airfields are the coldest places known to man.

seriously? you are suggesting sealing off all platforms and pumping hot air into them to make them nice for people? This isn't Siberia - it inst THAT cold here!
 
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HowardGWR

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seriously? you are suggesting sealing off all platforms and pumping hot air into them to make them nice for people? This isn't Siberia - it inst THAT cold here!

You missed my TIC bit (again). I'll resume putting smilies after such comments. Apologies. The rest was serious though.

OK, serious now. If the suggestion made by the OP were adopted, it would cut down through blasts of air. The frontage of some overall roof designs did have a glass portion that reached down to a few feet above the loading gauge height, which would help.
 

Bletchleyite

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seriously? you are suggesting sealing off all platforms and pumping hot air into them to make them nice for people? This isn't Siberia - it inst THAT cold here!

It's easier, where you have a separate concourse like you do at Kings Cross, to seal *that* off from the trainshed and heat/air condition it. The space is a similar size to Euston's Great Hall.

Where you don't, The Lawn at Paddington is a good example of an effective alternative, though I think they might have been better, were money not a concern, installing a Manc Picc style glass wall instead, bringing the whole concourse into the "warm" area.
 

DarloRich

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i just don't think it is an issue or worth spending the money - perhaps being northern and suitably insulated I have a higher threshold for the cold ;)
 

Deepgreen

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More than a little relevant is the query as to why seemingly all stations that have new canopies these days have them designed such that they utterly fail to keep the rain off the passengers beneath them! London Bridge is but one example - the canopies are both very high and a long way back from the edge - possible future OHLE cannot account for this extreme lack of fitness for pupose as there are hundreds of stations on routes that have been electrified without needing to expose people to wet weather in this way. Reading is another example where a band of two metres or so of the platform edges are soaked during rain, and not just beyond the yellow line either, so it would seem not to be a ploy to keep passengers away from the edge. Architects' whim?
 

61653 HTAFC

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You missed my TIC bit (again). I'll resume putting smilies after such comments. Apologies. The rest was serious though.

OK, serious now. If the suggestion made by the OP were adopted, it would cut down through blasts of air. The frontage of some overall roof designs did have a glass portion that reached down to a few feet above the loading gauge height, which would help.

Why not have automatic doors that only open when a train is arriving or departing? It worked for the Merry Hell Monorail...

:idea:;)
 

edwin_m

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I'd say heating is unnecessary over most of a station because most passengers pass through in a fairly short time wearing clothing that is appropriate to the weather outside. Operating staff will often also have to wear outdoor clothing because they need to visit the outdoor parts of the station. However it would be good to have some areas with some heating and more importantly protection from draughts, for those who need to wait a bit longer. What did they used to call those - "Waiting Rooms" wasn't it?

At KX you can't even go into a café for shelter, as they are all open plan too, although I think the mezzanine might be a bit sheltered from the through draughts. The revamped station at Nottingham is also bad for draughts due to the number of doors in the outer concourse - staff at the open-plan shops have to wear coats and scarves too.
 
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broadgage

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I cant support fitting any form of heating to large and open areas such as station concourses.
At a time of growing concern about fuel costs and the climate change impact of fuel burning it seems most unwise to contemplate burning fuel to heat such large and very well ventilated areas.

Reducing cold air ingress by better screening between inside/outside or by the fitting of power operated doors might be worth considering, but even that has its drawbacks.

Firstly, reduced airflow increases the chance of uncomfortable heat build up in hot weather, and air conditioning is even more expensive than heating.

Secondly, generous ventilation is a potential lifesaver in the event of fire. When the burger bar next catches fire, I would prefer that the smoke escapes readily rather than smoke logging a large concourse area and putting lives at risk. Very plentiful ventilation may actual[y be a requirement of the fire risk strategy, and even if not an actual requirement is still a good idea.

Also in these troubled times we must be aware that terrorists may detonate bombs or release noxious materials.
The pressure wave of an explosion dissipates more readily in an open area, as do toxic gases etc.

Finally, money is always in short supply and many train services are badly overcrowded. I would prefer that money be spent on more or longer trains than on heating large concourses.
 

HSTEd

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If heating large concourses is not a good idea then I have to consider whether such things are actually a good idea any more.
With the timetables of today you could probably have a waiting room for each platform/platform pair and sort passengers into them as they arrive, with no central waiting area at all.
 

johnnychips

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You should try Liege Guillemins in Belgium: magnificent Calatrava architecture, but absolutely freezing and windswept in winter.
 

ChiefPlanner

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Nothing beats the new Blackfriars for the cold experience in mid Winter - above the river Thames and with a N-S alignment and handy gaps in the glazing to give you a full experience of any wind. (the platform staff were promptly given some refuge cabins but the public just get on with it)
 

yorksrob

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This is a very relevant topic and every time I read 'the magnificent Victorian overall roof is to be restored', I groan. When one considers the welcoming ambience of airports, these cathedrals of draughts compare badly.

Once steam and diesel has been eradicated from a station, there is no excuse for not sealing off the platform areas and conditioning the air in them, as in underground systems where doors open when the train arrives.

The only time airports fall down is when one does not have an elephant's trunk to connect to the plane and one has to cross the tarmac, Airfields are the coldest places known to man.

Oh please no, there are too many dingy subterranean car park type stations on the network.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
If heating large concourses is not a good idea then I have to consider whether such things are actually a good idea any more.
With the timetables of today you could probably have a waiting room for each platform/platform pair and sort passengers into them as they arrive, with no central waiting area at all.

Concourses generally seem to be quite good for circulating around large stations, although that doesn't preclude you from building waiting rooms on and off them, as at Hull Paragon.
 

hulabaloo

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I nominate Strood and the old Rochester station as two of the coldest experiences I've had waiting for a train in winter.

I'm sure the northerners will now pile in to tell me that it's positively balmy down here in comparison :)
 

Steveman

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Kings Cross should spend money on all the things that are rubbish before they install heaters.
 

FOH

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At least Kings Cross attempts some visual aesthetics, London Bridge is just a glass box wind generator with platform canopies too shallow and high to stop snow and rain from falling on platforms and concourse.
 

TheEdge

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If you want to experience true cold there is no place better for that than Ely...
 

najaB

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I nominate Strood and the old Rochester station as two of the coldest experiences I've had waiting for a train in winter.
York and Doncaster for me. Had to wait at both of them in -10°C (and lower) a few winters back. Just takes a strong breeze to cut right through you.
 

route:oxford

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York and Doncaster for me. Had to wait at both of them in -10°C (and lower) a few winters back. Just takes a strong breeze to cut right through you.

Got to be Stirling...

Or the "outside" platforms at Waverley - they are absolutely bitter.
 

HowardGWR

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Yes, the eastern side of the country is always 'a bit sharp' on a fine winter's morn. I think the OP made a very good point and the recent fashion of building inadequate platform canopies (west or east) is another failure.

Having written that, Bristol Parkway platforms are not for less 'well covered' travellers.
 
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