The mega-deck over the controversial Crossrail depot in the new Old Oak and Park Royal development in west London has been “parked” according to the chair of the project’s client.
The idea for the 7ha deck was first made public in March last year. At the time, the Old Oak & Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC) said it wanted to capitalise on the development opportunities presented on such a key location within the site.
The decision to locate the depot on the site was taken in 2008, before plans were announced to sweep High Speed 2 (HS2) through the site and use it as one of its major transport interchanges.
Momentum for the project slowed at the start of the year with OPDC chief executive Victoria Hills saying its fate lay in the hands of the incoming chair.
Now New Civil Engineer can reveal that new chair Liz Peace – who was appointed in March this year – has said the deck has been “parked”.
“I think that that one is probably parked for the moment because we have other fish to fry,” said Peace.
“The Crossrail depot is going in there, along with the stabling for the trains. There may be something we can do to tweak how, maybe, they set up with spaces between the lines and that sort of thing, but nobody is going to be doing anything mega there.”
She went on to say no scheme is perfect, compromises had have to be made and the OPDC is now focusing on, and prioritising delivering faster growth in other areas of the massive 650ha site.
“For a while let’s just concentrate on the places where we can deliver something and accept that the depot and the stabling will be there,” she said. “I think it is a gleam in a lot of people’s eyes, but that is not my priority and it is a long way down stream.
“Whether and how you might be able to do something with that depot in in a few years’ time, that’s a future debate to have. Access [across the site] is the key thing and making sure we have a decent bridge across the rail tracks.”
Peace was interviewed by New Civil Engineer on her visions and plans for the massive new development. Read the full interview here.