Fury as Ilford station rebuild axed from Crossrail plans

THE SCRAPPING of plans to demolish and rebuild Ilford station as part of the multi-million pound Crossrail has left fuming council bosses pledging to do what they can to reverse the decision.

Crossrail has announced it will no longer need to rebuild the station after reviewing designs produced “several years ago”, in order to “ensure they deliver value for money, meet the future needs of passengers and are fit for purpose”.

But Redbridge Council has been left seething, insisting the rebuild would have presented “very real opportunities for redevelopment, particularly of the area between the station and Ilford Hill”.

Plans for step-free access at Seven Kings station have also been binned.

The council is lobbying Crossrail, Network Rail and the mayor of London Boris Johnson’s office to get the downgrading of works reversed.

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The �15.9billion rail network will run from Maidenhead in Berkshire and Heathrow in the west to Shenfield in Essex and Abbey Wood, Kent, in the east.

At least 1,500 homes will be built in areas along High Road, as well as around Seven Kings and Goodmayes, where Crossrail is set to leave its footprint.

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A Crossrail spokesman said: “To deliver Crossrail services, Ilford station needs to be significantly altered to create a better layout for passengers as well as extensively refurbished and step-free lifts provided.

“Plans to improve Ilford station have recently been shared with Redbridge Council but there is no need to demolish and completely rebuild the existing station building.”

On scrapping plans for step-free access at Seven Kings station, the spokesman said: “This decision was made during Parliamentary consideration of the Crossrail Bill based on the projected numbers of passengers who will use the station, the cost of providing step-free access and the distance to the nearest accessible station.

“Step-free provision will be kept under review following the start of Crossrail services by Transport for London who will let the concession to operate Crossrail and Network Rail.”

A spokesman for Redbridge Council said the lack of step-free access would “be a huge concern to many of our elderly and less mobile residents”.

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