Status: Full Planning Consent
Topics: Listed Buildings, Conservation Area, Archaeology
Commercial and Industrial Project
Rail Operating Scheme for Network Rail
Full planning permission was obtained for this major development in the city centre, which forms part of Network Rail’s reorganisation of its national signalling and control system.
The scheme provides a 3 storey 7,500m2 Rail Operations Centre which will control rail traffic on the East Coast Main Line from London to the Scottish Border. It also provides a 2 storey 6,500m2 Workforce Training Centre to enable up to 200 engineering and maintenance staff at one time to learn new techniques and update existing skills.
The site is adjacent to the Grade II* listed Station and the Central Historic Core Conservation Area, and also lies within an Area of Archaeological Importance. O’Neill Associates helped manage sensitive consultations with Council Conservation Officers, Historic England, the Civic Trust, Conservation Area Advisory Panel, local residents and Elected Members. Negotiations resulted in the development of a high quality contemporary scheme that respects local character and distinctiveness that now enhances the visual qualities of the location.
Archaeological investigations were undertaken, which revealed substantial remains of 6 engine sheds dating from the mid-1800’s and a foundation scheme was developed to ensure that 95% of the archaeology remains undisturbed following the implementation of the scheme.
The project has delivered Network Rail’s largest investment so far in its strategic network restructuring. It regenerates a vacant brownfield site, creates a gateway development for the city centre and has considerable benefits in economic, environmental and townscape terms.