Construction workers have begun the process of creating a modern station building and facilities
Work on a major £6 million redevelopment of Fleet railway station has finally started.
Construction workers have moved on site to start work on a modern main station building, a platform waiting shelter, improved forecourt arrangements and a replacement footbridge equipped with lifts.
The seven-month South West Trains-Network Rail Alliance project has been funded by the government’s National Stations Improvement Programme and Access for All scheme, along with South West Trains and Hart District Council.
The joint Network Rail and South West Trains Alliance said once the work is completed, passengers will benefit from a completely modernised station with a new footbridge and lifts.
It added new, lower counter windows and a waiting area will be provided, making the station more welcoming to passengers, while the forecourt area will be improved with a better interchange for all modes of transport and an increase in car parking spaces.
Arthur Pretorius, deputy customer service director for the joint alliance, said: “Fleet station will feel more spacious once the project is complete, enabling passengers to pass through the station more quickly and easily.
“Together with making the station fully accessible with a new footbridge and lifts, the forecourt area will be improved making the interchange much easier for passengers travelling to and from Fleet.
“During this franchise we will be investing over £50m in our stations as these provide a gateway to our rail services.
“We appreciate the support of Hart District Council on this project.”
Councillor Stephen Parker, deputy leader of Hart District Council, said: “We are delighted to be playing our part in facilitating this key enhancement of the core infrastructure of Fleet and district.
“The new station, coupled with the revised interchange, will make the whole experience of using the station smoother and more comfortable.
“When the new parking is completed, the capacity of the complex to cater for Fleet’s travellers will be much improved.
“This is partnership with our stakeholders in action with concrete results, literally.”
The station building will include a new ticket office, booking hall, staff facilities, public toilets, associated store rooms and a totem featuring an analogue clock.
The proposals included national and local input from Passenger Focus and the British Transport Police.
Network Rail said the building will be constructed using mainly aluminium, glazing and brickwork.
The station will remain fully open with no change to services while the work is ongoing. The project is due to be completed by early spring 2014.