Tuesday 6 February 2024

Off To Unuversity (2)

 Commonwealth Games 2022

It was decided that University station would need to be drastically enlarged in time for increased use of the Uni campus for the Games. The station is on a cramped site, hemmed in by the canal on the east and other development including Uni and hospital facilities on the west.

So a brand new station was needed and work was due to be completed for the big event of '22.

The new station has just opened!

Delays, presumably caused by Covid (the usual excuse!) mean that only some work to improve the platforms was completed for the Games.

We saw that the old station was cramped. Here is the up platform (to Birmingham) ...
... and the down side was equally tight.
The platfrom canopy (not in the shot above) ...
... is right up against the towpath.

The old entrance was poky in the extreme ...
... and from a very narrow footpath.

And January 2024

Fully open at last!

We can understand what has now happened by reference to an aerial view of the partially finished work.
The new main entrance is on the west side of the line on Vincent Drive. Where once were tennis courts ...
... is opened up as a fine "station square" with the new building to the north of the platforms.
We have an artist's impression of the new entrance.
Big, innit?

There are plenty of seats in the new blocks ...
... but the widened platforms are now clear of pillars, seats and any other obstruction. There are lifts, of course.

Additionally, a new footbridge leads from the station building across the canal.
Here there are steps a-plenty and a zigzag ramp for those for whom steps are a problem.
Currently, Streetview shows all this under construction.

Ironically, the bus stops are actually close to the old entrance. You might have thought that laybys on or opposite the former tennis courts would be happier?
The old entrance can be glimpsed to the right of the bus.
fbb will take a look at the bus services) to the Uni in tomorrow's blog.

It all looks very splendid - even if the buildings are, as they say in transport-excuse parlance "running a little late due to operational reasons."

The Puzzle Of The Peculiar Pipe

When fbb was compiling this blog, he noticed this ...
... which looks like an entrance. From the towpath is looks like a passage of some sort ...
... but it seems a bit small to be part of a footbridge and, furthermore, it has no link to the station.

But on the far side, having crossed track and canal ...
... a potential limited height pedestrian would plunge six feet to the ground upon exit.


And another mystery. 

Whilst walking along the towpath c/o Google Streetview., fbb came across this ...
Will this be an exit/entrance on to the towpath? It is on the down side, so fbb does wonder about Health and Safety. Will late "nite" revellers from central Brum alight from their train in an alcohol induced daze, leave via the towpath exit and "enjoy" a nice refreshing plunge in the dark and ominous waters of the Worcester and Birmingham canal?
Could cure a hangover?

 Next University blog : Wednesday 7th Febriary 

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