Working in joint venture, HOCHTIEF delivered a major upgrade to Reading Station to greatly increase capacity as part of Network Rail’s wider Reading Station Area Regeneration (RSAR) Programme. We built two new station entrances, a passenger transfer deck and remodelled the station platforms, all while the busy station remained open.

Key features:

  • Northern Entrance and Western Gateline buildings
  • 96m long, 30m wide passenger transfer deck
  • Platform construction and remodelling
  • Platform canopies and buildings
  • OLE infrastructure
  • Footbridge and building demolition
  • 16 lift shafts
  • M & E systems
  • Signalling
  • Subway alteration
  • Track formation
  • Drainage

Maintaining station operations was imperative during delivery. With possession access highly restricted, and the completion date immovable, we worked in short duration line blocks and operated virtually 24 hours a day, modifying our methodologies to reduce timescales and eliminate reliance on possessions wherever possible.

We downsized piles so that we could work with smaller plant behind hoardings during the day, while specialist temporary works allowed us to excavate in platforms without closing them. We demolished the existing transfer deck early to avoid a later disruptive possession, and we accelerated delivery of two platforms in time for the London 2012 Olympics.

Maximising offsite prefabrication also minimised disruption. We redesigned the lift shafts to use stacked precast concrete boxes, saving time, costs and improving productivity, and we modified the original platform canopy design to use prefabricated modular canopy sections. This reduced the number of lifting operations needed during possessions by 75%, minimising health and safety risks, reducing construction time and saving £1m.

Throughout delivery, we maintained station operations, protected railway assets and ensured public safety. The project was opened by Her Majesty the Queen and won several awards, including National Rail Awards – Project of the Year 2015.