Worcestershire Parkway station progress

Discussion in 'Infrastructure & Stations' started by Unixman, 8 Jul 2014.

  1. Class172

    Class172 Established Member Quizmaster

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    You may well be familiar with Worcester's roads, however unless you live in the city or commute to it every day, you cannot give an accurate description on what goes on. You will find that it is uncommon to see someone dropped off at Foregate St., but at Shrub Hill it is a far more common occurrence. Foregate serves the city centre almost entirely, whist Shrub Hill is used more so by residents on the eastern/northern side of the city. I admit that those on the western side of the river have no access to a station (which is why I advocate building a small station at Henwick) – either way, if they wanted to drive to another station, be it Parkway/Droitwich/Warwick etc., they still have to negociate the A4440 (Southern By-pass) which suffers from congestion all day.

    Moggie is correct that people from Warndon, Fernhill Heath and Claines will drive to Droitwich, where there is also minimal parking, but shortens their commute by a good 20 mins. A similar story can be said for Hartlebury: a fair proportion of commuters drive to Droitwich (more services) rather than use the station near them.

    Building Worcester Parkway would not have much (if any) impact on the traffic using the Worcester by-passes. Since new people who use the station will have previously used the same roads to get to the M5 and drive to their respective destinations. The A4440 between Whittington (A44) and Ketch (A38) roundabouts is now being dualled so that will help any situation that may arise. Very few people drive through Worcester anyhow, and the station is next to roads they already use.


    I'm not necessarily saying it is irrelevant, but I would agree, Worcestershire Parkway is also for connections onto the XC line north/south. People do drive from Droitwich Spa and Bromsgrove to Warwick Parkway, since the towns are well connected to the motorway, but these people are travelling to London only, and not destinations such as Manchester, Bristol, Leeds etc. Building the new station would reduce the attraction of driving to Warwick, so there would likely be an increase on people using the London services, which is no bad thing.


    The situation in Worcester is not exactly the same – whereas Leamington has all the trains direct, getting an XC train at Worcester would require a change, whilst the LM services are still direct. As I've said before, you can adjust the pricing of tickets on respective routes to discourage Parkway-New St. commuting; it's not as if XC don't do that already...
     
  2. Unixman

    Unixman Member

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    It might easily cause a major impact on the traffic. The key bottleneck of the southern link road ( Carrington Bridge) is not being dualled and if there is any increase of traffic due to people attempting to get to the station from the west side of the river then there could be problems.
     
  3. Class172

    Class172 Established Member Quizmaster

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    If those people previously used the car to get to the destinations, they would have to use the same route in order to reach the M5. But yes, if they previously didn't drive anywhere, there would be additional traffic.
     
  4. Unixman

    Unixman Member

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    The station could generate considerable extra traffic as people switch their commuting patterns from using the city centre stations to Parkway. This could include extra traffic coming from Malvern.

    The whole point of the new station is that it is a "Parkway" .....
     
    Last edited: 19 Jul 2014
  5. anthony263

    anthony263 Established Member

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    Shrub Hill station is certainly well used by workers during the peaks travelling to Worcester Royal Hospital. I should know this considering I drive the 31/31B Henwick Park - City Centre - Royal Hospital service on a very regular basis and have to suffer the terrible congestion through the city Centre.

    Dont forget traffic in Worcester is in my opinion going to get owrse once the two park and ride services are gone come September. However Worcester Parkway if it is served by regular services into Worcester would certainly helpe take take a lot of traffic off the roads which should help things around Whittington.
     
  6. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    And "if it is served by regular services into Worcester" is the nub of the matter.

    Unless the broader capacity and operating issues around Worcester and on the Cotswold Line to Evesham are dealt with, so you can provide frequent train links between Parkway, the city and elsewhere in the county, then people will just use cars to reach it.

    Just plonking this station down before those issues are dealt with and XC gets extra stock to handle demand from Worcestershire is going to be a recipe for problems.
     
    Last edited: 23 Jul 2014
  7. deltic08

    deltic08 On Moderation

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    Just electrify and extend Cross City line services from Bromsgrove to a bay platform at Parkway. There is plenty of room on the site. Extra stock for XC is then not a problem.
     
  8. The Planner

    The Planner Established Member

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    They will have to wait a very long time for that, even if they did it off the back of a wider electrification scheme then Worcestershire would have to cough up for the rest of it. Would also make all the work at Bromsgrove a bit redundant too.
     
  9. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    You just don't get it, do you?

    The entire Worcester area is an operating nightmare, worn-out signalling - a failure at Shrub Hill at about 6am on Monday decimated services in all directions for the rest of the morning - and single-line bi-di working through Foregate Street and over the river, so an ever-present risk of equipment failure, plus inflexible working, with limited capacity, on an antique track layout which no-one in their right mind would waste money installing overhead wiring on without a total rebuild, plus new signals. And does Shrub Hill have a viable future once Parkway opens anyway?

    There is an excellent explanation of the current set-up here http://www.roscalen.com/signals/Worcester/index.htm

    CrossCity services make lots of stops, whereas XC ones don't. So which train would you use, the one that makes lots of stops and even goes back into Worcester first, then all the way round via Droitwich, or the one that goes straight to New Street or calls Bromsgrove and University only en route? And your 'solution' would do nothing for people wanting to go towards Cheltenham, Gloucester, Bristol and Cardiff or beyond on packed XC trains.
     
  10. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    But none of that matters to the my station must have a better serviceists. There is a complete inability to even acknowledge a bigger picture. Facts mean nothing!

    Coin is what will decide if extra trains stop at this station. Nothing else.
     
  11. Unixman

    Unixman Member

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    Given that 500 car parking spaces will be built, I strongly expect that the traffic situation around Whittington ( an already horrible junction ) will just get worse.
     
  12. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    Don't forget politics - this station is a political project, driven by the county council and the county's Tory MPs.

    That said, the council used to be keen on a Malvern-Worcester-Evesham shuttle concept, precisely to - in combination with Cotswold Line trains - give a decent service frequency between the city and the Parkway, but in their desperation to be seen to be doing something over the past couple of years, that idea and tackling the broader issues of modernising Worcestersire's railways and providing trains with adequate capacity to serve the Parkway have just been booted into touch by the council - although the rail industry knows full well they haven't gone away, hence the continued lack of enthusiasm from that quarter.
     
  13. davetheguard

    davetheguard Member

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    When new stations are in the pipeline, I also find myself pleased at the prospect of further railway expansion: serving new markets and population; bringing choice of travel mode to a few more thousand people stuck in "road only" mode, with all the congestion, pollution, and delays that can involve.

    However, for the first time ever with a new station, I have no enthusiasm for this Worcester Parkway development at all:

    1. It will slow down Cotswold Line trains even further;
    2. As jimm says, XC don't have the capacity at present to carry the extra passengers;
    3. And the "killer concern" for me - it will threaten the future of Shrub Hill; a station that, while not central, is at least actually in Worcester!

    This is a sticking plaster on a broken limb. This will not solve Worcester's many rail infrastructure problems. And it won't even improve rail access from the city to Bristol & South Wales unless you've got a car to get out to Parkway.

    In short, it is wasting already scant funds, on a "solution" that won't solve anything.
     
  14. Unixman

    Unixman Member

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    The obvious thing to do to that railway is to electrify it all the way from Bristol through to the ECML. This becomes even more important with the upgrade of the GWR main line to S Wales and it seems that it is one of the few remaining strategic routes ( yes I am well aware that there are plenty of long distance routes that are no electrified - Chilterns for eg - which is why I said "strategic") that there are no plans ( as far as I know anyway ) to be electrified. I suspect that it will happen one day but I am not holding my breath.
     
  15. The Planner

    The Planner Established Member

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    I suspect Bristol Derby will end up in CP6, Chilterns quite possibly too.
     
  16. MidlandMainlie

    MidlandMainlie Member

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    One could argue that the lack of any new DMU's being built in the near future, plus by the time CP6 finishes the 15x will be getting on a bit could see the electrification of all of the major routes radiating out from Brimingham to Bristol, Derby, the Chiltern Mainline and Snow Hill routes to Worcester via Kidderminster and Stratford upon Avon, plus extending electrification from Wolverhampton to Shrewsbury. This would free lots of relatively young DMU's to replace older ones.
     
  17. Class 170101

    Class 170101 Established Member

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    To be honest I think Chiltern will be one of the later schemes. The DMUs they have are relatively new and still have plenty of life left in them yet.

    However I think getting as far as Plymouth from both Newbury and Birmingham is of more value as far as the wires go at this time.

    The HSTs on the London route will be approaching their 50th birthday (if not already there) by the end of CP6 as where as the Chiltern DMUs will be nearer 25 to 30 years old.
     
  18. D6975

    D6975 Established Member

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    Stopping peak hour commuters using long distance services is simple - don't stop the long distance services there at peak hours.
    It's the same situation as Reading commuters packing out Bristol/S Wales/Penzance trains out of Padd. Peak hour TM services used to be first stop Swindon or Chippenham and still ran full and standing out of Pad. Now there's just a few PU only restrictions that get totally ignored. It's been discussed at length on another thread.
     
  19. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    The politics provide most of the coin!
     
  20. jimm

    jimm Established Member

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    Simple, is it? Well given that back up this thread some of the enthusiasts for this scheme - which I would have no concerns about were it part of a comprehensive rail modernisation strategy for Worcestershire, including extra rolling stock on the XC route, rather than the current political vanity project - told us it would improve the connectivity of Worcestershire, I don't think it would go down to well if the county was told 'you can have improved connectivity, but only off-peak and at weekends...'

    Without the use of capacity on HSTs, FGW would never be able to shift all the Thames Valley commuters, never mind that there are other reasons for the demise of first stop Swindon trains - that Reading is a major business centre and inward commuting destination in its own right these days and also one of the busiest interchange stations in the country.
     
  21. Noddy

    Noddy Member

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  22. dysonsphere

    dysonsphere Member

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    Just looked at first page, why on earth would anyone want to spend money on a sculptre
     
  23. HowardGWR

    HowardGWR Established Member

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    No separate cycle lanes visible (no cycles pictured full stop). Couldn't see how bus pax are dropped off /picked up without getting wet. Looks like a typical car-mad 1980s development.
     
  24. anthony263

    anthony263 Established Member

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    Considering how Worcester is at the moment I am not surprised.
     
  25. Noddy

    Noddy Member

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    There is a bike shed in the artists impression (between the station buildings and the Bristol - Birmingham lines), however unless they build a bike lane into Worcester and towards Pershore anyone using a bike on the B4084 would be risking their life.

    The project doesn't seem popular on here but at least they have some vision - e.g. making sure they don't block the second line in case of redoubling. As someone who commutes from Gloucestershire to Worcester I'm supportive at least!
     
  26. Llanigraham

    Llanigraham On Moderation

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    Isn't there already a cycle route through Norton village?
    I'm sure there were signs when I worked in Norton.
     
  27. DynamicSpirit

    DynamicSpirit Established Member

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    The PDF describing the proposals (http://www.fsb.org.uk/092/assets/worcestershire-parkway-station.pdf) does state:

    And also:
    Although it's hard to see any of that on the picture - which also seems to show the bus stops rather a long way from the station building. Perhaps worth querying it - eg. with local councillors - if anyone who lives in the area is concerned.
     
  28. Llanigraham

    Llanigraham On Moderation

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    The second quote above states Woodbury lane, which confirms the comment I made about the cycle route through Norton village.
     
  29. D6975

    D6975 Established Member

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    I didn't say anything about not having peak hour services.
    I said don't stop long distance services there.
    At Peak hours you run (Chelt) - WS Parkway - Brum services with DMUs.
     
  30. Noddy

    Noddy Member

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    Yep I'd missed that - too busy looking at the pretty pictures. If bike access is from Woodbury Lane (presumably through the industrial estate) I think they need to concentrate bike facilities on that side of the station as no one likes to haul their bike across platforms to access storage especially if they have to go back again.

    I have to say that with c2500 (c10000 people?) homes being built within a couple of miles, if they develop good bike and footpath links I do think it will be reasonably successful and seen as environmentally friendly. Not to mention it's very close to J7 and could also improve links from Pershore & Evesham into Birmingham. Assuming enough trains stop.
     
    Last edited: 13 Oct 2014

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