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Design & Culture
UITP awards nominee

Network Rail Hub Station

Network Rail Ltd

  • Design & Culture
United Kingdom
Elevator pitch
HUB Station is the blueprint for a new generation of sustainable community focused transport hubs. Our design guidance and standardised designs define an adaptable kit of parts to transform stations across Britain and re-establish their pivotal civic role.
Project description

Network Rail invited proposals that will challenge and re-imagine what a ‘station’ could become in the 21st century to serve and support local communities across Great Britain.

7N Architects’ winning design, HUB Station, aims to enhance the significance that stations have within local communities, by making them a framework and gathering place for community activities, signified by a clocktower as a local landmark. HUB Stations are created from a catalogue of simple, adaptable, and scalable kit of parts that can be tailored to the locality of each station, whilst maintaining a consistent national identity. The modular approach should improve quality, facilitate construction, and minimise maintenance cost in an sustainable way.

Innovative features

Key innovations include:

  • Cost-value optimisation through an adaptable kit of pre-approved interchangeable components and lean design principles.
  • Extensive public consultation reached nearly 30,000 people across Britain.
  • Passenger focused environment, enhancing the provision of shelter and facilities, utilising tactile natural materials.
  • Prioritising high quality landscape and public realm at the station entrance and platforms to promote sustainable travel, biodiversity, and to connect the stations to their local communities.
  • Prototyping of standard design elements to ensure quality and efficient roll-out.
  • Whole life carbon reduction through use of engineered timber structures and extensive solar arrays.

Impact features

The project provides a much-needed new direction for the development of railway stations in a sustainable and environmentally concsious manner. The UK rail network reaches 2500 locations and 85% of them are small to medium sized stations. There is an increasing demand for more small stations, as well as for the enhancement or replacement of dilapidated existing stations.

Previous attempts at providing design guidance have not stood the test of time, and often result in building assets that are expensive to maintain and do not provide the essential customer needs in an environmentally sensitive manner. This new guidance establishes a much needed alternative approach and baseline provision for meeting the demands of a 21st century railway.

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