Delay in opening new Dalmarnock station

A NEW multi-million pound train hub to serve as a gateway to the 2014 Commonwealth Games will be delayed for months.

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Dalmarnock Station will be closed until the spring
Dalmarnock Station will be closed until the spring

Train services were due to resume at Dalmarnock Station in just two weeks, but the Evening Times understands it will remain closed until next spring.

Commuters had been told the station, which closed on June 3, was to reopen on November 26.

Travellers have already endured five months of alternative travel, but it is now understood alternative arrangements will be in place until next May.

The entire £11million redevelopment project was due to be completed by late 2013, but it could mean it may not be fully finished until the year of the Games.

An industry insider said: "It seems there is a problem with ground conditions which have caused a lengthy delay. It is not a case of just weeks, but months.

"If works are pushed back to next spring, does that mean we are looking at 2014 before the whole development is complete and where does that leave the cost of the project?"

As reported in the Evening Times, earlier this year, Dalmarnock station, near Celtic Park, was closed to allow workmen to build the new multi-million-pound hub in time for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

The new station, in the city's East End, was expected to cost up to £11m and it's not yet known if costs are likely to rise due to the delay.

Football fans and commuters will have to continue using neighbouring stations at Bridgeton and Belgrove.

Network Rail is delivering the project on behalf of partners including Transport Scotland and appointed contractors C Spencer to carry out the work.

Extensive preparatory work was carried out and involved site clearance and restorations which included painting 15 concrete encased overhead steel beams.

The new station, which will replace the existing facility in Swanston Street, is being built in Dalmarnock Road. The entrance will be directly opposite the new Commonwealth Arena and Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome.

The rail hub will have:

l Lift access to the station's two platforms.

l A new pedestrian footbridge.

l New platform surfaces and wall cladding.

l New customer information and communication systems.

It's being funded by the Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company, Glasgow City Council and Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) with extra money secured from the European Regional Development Fund.

The station will be a key transport hub for those travelling to and from the Commonwealth Games.

A message on Network Rail's website states: "We're building a new station in Dalmarnock Road to replace the existing one in Swanston Street. The temporary station closure is needed so we can deliver the work safely.

"The station will reopen on November 26, 2012, with the £11m redevelopment project completed by late 2013."

Scotrail is advising its customers to use either Bridgeton station half-a-mile to the north-west of Dalmarnock, or Rutherglen station one mile to the south-east.

SEASON tickets for Dalmarnock can be used at either of these stations.

At the time of work being announced, David Simpson, Network Rail route managing director for Scotland, said: "Once complete the new Dalmarnock station will greatly enhance facilities for regular passengers and provide an impressive welcome for visitors. Due to the extensive and complex nature of the project it is not possible to deliver the new station without a short closure of the existing facility, but every effort has been made to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum."

A Network Rail spokesman said: "Due to unforeseen and unexpected ground conditions (including the discovery of the remains of a former station) we have decided Dalmarnock Station must remain closed until next spring.

"We apologise for any inconvenience and hope station users will appreciate the new station environment, step free access and the completely refurbished platforms which will be completed in summer 2013."

A ScotRail spokesman said: "We have been advised that the closure of Dalmarnock Station will be temporarily extended.

"We thank our customers for their patience in circumstances beyond our control. As for alternative travel options, people can continue to use Bridgeton or Rutherglen Stations while the works continue to deliver the new station."

deborah.anderson@ eveningtimes.co.uk

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