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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Bathroom showroom makes way for new Birmingham station

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A former bathroom showroom building has been knocked down as construction continues on Stirchley’s new Pineapple Road Railway Station.

The station is one of three currently under construction on the Camp Hill Line – the other two are at Moseley Village and Kings Heath – restoring passenger rail services to this part of south Birmingham for the first time in more than 80 years.

The building was previously a ticket office before the station, which was called Hazelwell at the time, closed in 1941. It was until recently used as a bathroom showroom and shop.

It is being pulled down to allow for the construction of a station forecourt, cycle rack, car drop off area and, most crucially, to allow step-free access to the new platforms. Of the original station the historic footbridge is being retained.

The project is led by TfWM, which is part of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) and the West Midlands Rail Executive (WMRE) in partnership with Birmingham City Council and rail partners.

Cllr Brigid Jones, deputy leader of Birmingham City Council and WMCA portfolio holder for inclusive communities, said: “Clearing this building is a major milestone on the way to getting our new station built and passenger services running to Pineapple Road for the first time since the Second World War.

“Opening up new stations can play a key role in improving our environment by offering an alternative to the car and helping to reduce carbon emissions and improve the air we breathe.”

The WMCA is providing £36 million towards the cost, with £20 million from the Department for Transport (DfT) and the remaining £5 million from Birmingham City Council’s clean air zone fund.  Rail industry partners include Network Rail, operator West Midlands Railway, and SLC-AECOM. VolkerFitzpatrick is building the stations under contract from TfWM.

Cllr Mary Locke, who represents Stirchley and is vice-chair of the WMCA’s transport delivery committee, said: “Access to a fast and frequent rail service into Birmingham city centre will make such a difference to the people of Stirchley which is why we are overjoyed to see the spades in the ground and progress on site after many years waiting for the station to reopen.

“This will make a huge difference to businesses and communities along the route.”

As part of a commitment to local heritage, the team will preserve and restore a Victorian brick wall bordering the site, which is locally listed as part of a neighbouring 1890’s arts and crafts style house. It will be cleaned of vegetation and dismantled brick by brick, to allow for foundation works on the new platform. The bricks will be cleaned of graffiti and the wall rebuilt.

The station name Pineapple Road was selected from three options following engagement with local residents last year.

Image credit: TfWM

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