Arup and Wilkinson Eyre have a track record of delivering cutting edge design with experience of the largest and most complex infrastructure projects in the world, including the Gateshead Millennium Bridge, the new concourse at London’s King’s Cross and the Rio 2016 Cariocas Arenas.
The new four-platform station, to the east of the M42, will include a people-mover system to provide a direct link to Birmingham Airport, Birmingham International station and the National Exhibition Centre.
HS2 Ltd Chief Executive, Mark Thurston said:
“Our new station in Solihull will be at the heart of the first phase of the project, increasing capacity, improving journeys and helping to unlock opportunities for tens of thousands of new jobs and homes around what will be a new landmark building for the west midlands.
“That’s why I’m delighted to welcome these talented designers to the team, and we look forward to working with them to create station designs which showcase world-class architecture, ease of use and value for money that our passengers and communities expect and deserve.”
HS2 Minister Nusrat Ghani said:
“HS2 is a modern railway fit for Britain’s future, improving vital links between some of our country’s biggest cities, driving forward growth and significantly improving services for passengers with thousands more seats on faster trains.
“Appointing these leading creative firms ensures that passengers on our world-class railway will experience modern and accessible stations. I am confident that these firms will deliver these projects at value for money, with designs that are both innovative and in keeping with their surroundings.”
The new station will be designed in collaboration with local communities, using best practice principles from stations around the world, and guidelines and which have been developed by an independent panel of leading architects and designers.
Plans for new development around the station site, led by local authorities as part of the UK Central Plan, are expected to create more than 77,000 new jobs and 4,000 new homes.
Welcoming the news, Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, said:
“The decision to appoint the team to design the HS2 station is an important step for a project which will have a truly transformational impact on the West Midlands. In addition to the connectivity and economic benefits of the investment in high speed rail infrastructure, the station itself will play a key part in the future growth of the city.
“The station will be so much more than a place to catch trains – it will be a catalyst, a gateway and a symbol of our resurgent region.”
Working with HS2 Ltd, the winners will be tasked with delivering:
- People-centred design, which offers a high-quality customer experience including shopping, business facilities, and opportunities for art and leisure
- Architecture which enables accessibility for all including step-free access from street-to-seat which is simple and intuitive to navigate
- ‘Timeless design’ for future-proofing and flexibility so stations accommodate changes in technology and in the population
- Respecting and contributing to the physical and cultural legacy of the location – responding to the local built and natural environment, using local materials and ensuring local people identify with their station and have pride in it
An independent HS2 Design Panel has scrutinised HS2’s guidelines and specifications for the stations, and will continue to play a key role in reviewing the detailed designs as they develop through 2018.
Chair of the Design Panel, Sadie Morgan from DrMM architects, said:
“We welcome the appointment of these world class designers and look forward to working with them and HS2 to help deliver an iconic building for Solihull which sets new standards in station design and ease of use, and provides a legacy of great architecture of which local people can be truly proud.”
Today HS2 also announced that WSP UK Limited (working with Grimshaw Architects LLP) has won the Birmingham Curzon Street contract while Ove Arup & Partners International Limited (working with Grimshaw Architects LLP) will work on London Euston and WSP UK Limited (working with Wilkinson Eyre Architects Limited) on London’s Old Oak Common interchange.
HS2 services from London and Birmingham will travel beyond the new high speed network via existing tracks to a wide range of destinations including Liverpool, the North West, Newcastle, Glasgow and Edinburgh.
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