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14 December 2011
Investing in railway stations can provide a major boost for urban regeneration, drive up employment levels and increase property values by up to 30%, according to a new study by Network Rail.
The company, which manages 18 of the biggest and busiest stations in Britain, has collaborated with international transport consultants Steer Davies Gleave to demonstrate the economic value of investment in railway stations.
The repor [http://www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk/Media-Library/SDG-stations-investment-report-1497.aspx]confirms that station investment can have a major impact on urban regeneration within the surrounding area, stimulate development, and increase economic activity and employment levels.
Based on interviews with over 60 stakeholders, economic modelling and case studies, the key findings of the research show station investment can:
Increase property values in the immediate vicinity of a station by 30% or more.
Directly support the overall growth of city centre economies and deliver employment opportunities.
Enable stations to act as a gateway to towns and cities, improve the image of the location and make them more attractive places to live, work and invest.
Act as a catalyst for wider regeneration.
David Biggs, Network Rail director of property, said: "This report confirms that investing in stations not only delivers improvements for passengers, but also boosts economic activity and leads to further investment in the local economy.
"The continued growth in passenger numbers has allowed Network Rail to attract partners to regenerate the areas around major transport hubs. Birmingham New Street is a great example; we are delivering a radically new station gateway in partnership with the council and John Lewis, transforming the south side of Birmingham city centre."
Network Rail commissioned Steer Davies Gleave to carry out this research early in 2011.
Network Rail is one of the largest land and property owners in the country and will generate over £1bn in the next five years from commercial activities, all of which will be re-investment in the railway.
Some current development projects include multi-million pound commercial schemes at London Bridge (The Shard), Cannon Street and Queen's Street Glasgow.
Solum Regeneration is a joint venture between Network Rail and Kier Property set up as a vehicle to regenerate a number of railway stations in the south east of England. Initially, seven sites at Epsom, Enfield, Maidstone East, Twickenham, Walthamstow, Wembley and Guildford have been identified and these will form the basis of this ten-year £500m venture.
As part of the continued investment in stations to increase capacity and improve the station environment for passengers, 75,000 sq. ft of exciting new retail space is being created at Waterloo, Manchester Piccadilly, Birmingham New Street and King's Cross stations.