July 30 2014 Latest news:
by Sebastian Mann
Wednesday, June 4, 2014
“Practical, workable” ways in which the Seven Kings Crossrail station could be made step-free have been outlined in an official study into accessibility across the mammoth infrastructure project.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson reaffirmed his commitment to making the Redbridge station more accessible as Transport for London (TfL) and the Department for Transport (DfT) put forward measures on Tuesday to make the whole route step-free.
At present, only seven out of 40 of the stations served do not allow full access for the infirm or those with disabilities.
The plans for Seven Kings would see the construction of a new footbridge - with three lifts and stairs - that could also be accessed from a walkway on the embankment south of platform one.
Mr Johnson said it was “only right” that Crossrail formed part of London’s “accessible future”, adding: “This report sets out workable solutions for step-free access at all Crossrail stations and I will continue working alongside the DfT and TfL to help deliver that.”
Lianna Etkind, from accessibility campaign group Transport for All, welcome the report.
She said: “A fully stepfree Crossrail would be transformative for disabled and older Londoners, opening up work opportunities and enabling us to get out and enjoy all that the capital has to offer.
“We urge DfT and TfL to swiftly secure the funding to ensure Crossrail becomes an inclusive rail line that Londoners can be proud of.”
Seven Kings station has an annual footfall of around 2.1million, a figure expected to rise to 3.5million by 2026 after the launch of Crossrail.
The route, one of Europe’s largest infrastructure projects, is set to open fully in 2019, when it will link Shenfield in Essex and Reading in Berkshire across London.
Government transport minister Stephen Hammond said “world class transport networks” such as London’s had to be “accessible for all”.
“The publication of this study is a step in the right direction,” he added.