Published on : Thursday, February 7, 2013
With over 400,000 working hours undertaken on the project, the huge station box at Woolwich, which has been built as part of the Crossrail project, has been completed by developer Berkeley Homes at its landmark Royal Arsenal Riverside development. 200 jobs were created to construct the station box.
The new station box is 256 metres long, 26 metres wide and 18 metres deep – equivalent to the size of 32 Olympic swimming pools. It is so long that the tallest building in Canary Wharf, One Canada Square, could easily be laid on its side within it, and still leave plenty of room for a double decker bus at either end.
Berkeley Homes has completed the vast station box four months ahead of schedule. The eastern end of the box will be handed over to Crossrail in early March.
The Woolwich box will act as an important staging post for the two 1,000 tonne tunnelling machines, Sophia and Mary, that are digging twin bore tunnels from Plumstead, underneath the River Thames to North Woolwich.
When Crossrail opens, up to 12 trains per hour during the peak will link southeast London and the Royal Docks with Canary Wharf, central London and beyond allowing residents to get to and from London’s key employment areas much more quickly and easily and boosting regeneration.
Andrew Wolstenholme, Crossrail Chief Executive said: “Berkeley Homes has completed the station box at Woolwich ahead of schedule, allowing Crossrail to get the site ready for the arrival of our thousand tonne tunnelling machine this spring. The benefits of Crossrail for southeast London will be significant – new journey opportunities, reduced journey times, direct access to London’s major employment centres as well as supporting wider regeneration.”
Karl Whiteman, Divisional Managing Director of Berkeley Homes (Urban Renaissance) Ltd, said: “The early completion of this significant project is a credit to the team, especially with over 400,000 man hours worked without incident and industry recognition for the exemplar sustainability credentials that have been set.”
To celebrate the completion of the box, Berkeley Homes will be holding an Open Day on Wednesday 27 February, offering a rare opportunity for the public to step inside the cavernous construction before it is handed over to Crossrail.
In addition, a charity fun run will be held within the box, raising money for Demelza House Children’s Hospice.
Karl Whiteman continued: “These public events will provide people a rare opportunity to visit what is a significant feat of civil engineering before it is handed over to Crossrail, and will prove a good way to raise money for a very deserving charity local to the project.”
Berkeley Homes will begin the planned construction of 585 homes on the station box site later this year, of which at least 165 will be affordable homes. Retail and commercial space will also be delivered, again contributing to the significant regeneration of Woolwich.