CLIENT: Morgan Sindall

The new improved facilities at birkenhead North train station are the second part of a £2.7 million scheme, the first part being a 274 space car park that opened December 2012. The new facilities have been installed to make it easier for passenger’s particularly disabled people to get access to the station from the new car park & surrounding areas.

Birkenhead station is located on the Wirral line of the Merseyrail network. Used by over 800,000 passengers annually, the station is an interchange between services to Liverpool, West Kirby and New Brighton and has links to local communities and the M53 motorway.

This project is an ‘access for all’ (AFA) scheme comprising of new hydraulic lifts serving platforms 1 to 3, footbridge for Network Rail, Mersey Rail, Mersey Travel and the department for transport. Kemada’s electrical package included new distribution, footbridge and car park led lighting, lift electrical services, cctv & public address.

The Issue

The existing station had three platforms with only an old dated footbridge for access for walking passengers only.

The old footbridge did not link up with the new car park leaving many empty spaces with commuters preferring to park in roads nearby to the station causing considerable congestion.

The station‘s incoming electrical supply was not sufficient to accommodate two new lift supplies and required upgrading with the addition of new switchgear and distribution equipment.

Poor lighting and security on the existing footbridge and surrounding areas was not to Network Rail standards and required upgrading to meet the new standards.

Birkenhead2 Birkenhead1

The Solution

The existing electrical supply and service main was upgraded by the Distribution Network Operator (DNO) to accommodate the additional requirements associated with the installation of the two hydraulic passenger lifts, modifications to allow for the new footbridge and re-configuration of the existing lighting and power distribution.

From the electrical meter cabinet new sub-main cables have been installed within underground cable ducting and terminate within the new platform 3 electrical switch room. New modular switchgear and distribution boards were installed for the stations existing sub-main supplies, lighting and power services serving the new footbridge, access stairways and further sub-main power supplies feeding the two hydraulic passenger lifts.

New column mounted luminaries were provided to all three platforms to the areas affected by the construction of the new footbridge. State of the art LED handrail & anticlimb lighting was installed to the new footbridge,car park ramp and access stairways to each platform. Lighting and power were installed to the three lift motor rooms and lift shafts.

New containment, cable trays and trunkings have been installed to facilitate the installation of LED lighting, power and comms CCTV/PA Cables for the new footbridge.

Additional security for Merseyrail, Network Rail staff and passengers was provided with new CCTV Cameras installed in the following locations:

  • Platforms 1, 2 & 3 for the areas affected by the construction of the new footbridge by the use of wall/post mounted Fixed Cameras
  • New footbridge and access stairways to each platform
  • Car parking areas and ramps
  • External & internal of each lift car

New recording equipment was installed within the existing rack & new monitor/control sited in the ticket office.

The Outcome

Since the official opening of the new link footbridge, the car park is close to capacity on a daily basis with the station becoming more accessible for staff and commuters. Transport Minister Baroness Kramer commented:

“Improving access and providing step free routes will really make a difference to passengers’ journeys from Birkenhead and across the Merseyrail network. It will open up access to work & leisure for more passengers, all which will help secure the UK’s long-term economic growth”.

It is the first time that an ‘Access for All’ scheme has been delivered by the train operating company instead of Network Rail. Kemada are proud to be part of the successful project and look forward to working with Mersey Rail and Network Rail once again.