Improving pedestrian flow during construction

Lessons learned from challenges encountered during the operation of previous configurations resulted in adoption of the successful ‘Dog Leg’ pedestrian flow plan at London Bridge station in August 2016

Works during the London Bridge Station Redevelopment required phased construction. A total of 128 stages of construction took place from 2012 onwards, a staging plan that took over three years to perfect. During the site delivery phases, 11 completely different station configurations were commissioned and operated.

One such configuration was introduced in January 2015, on the first full working day following the Christmas and New Year period. The configuration was encountered by passengers for the first time during the evening peak. Despite careful planning, the human behaviours and preferences ran contrary to expectations. Many passengers were inconvenienced and attempted to use a small fraction of available ticket barriers.

Image copyright: @Blowers Son

Lessons were learned from this experience by the project team. The original plan required passengers, who would be heading from the new concourse towards central London, to pass through the Southern exits and walk right around the Shard before heading across London Bridge. It was decided a mitigation was required. As the works approached the Stage 2A opening in August 2016, a task force was developed and several alternative options. Of the 17 proposed solutions, Option 14A was chosen.

A construction plan was developed, and an entirely new pedestrian flow plan built and implemented within a few weeks. When August 2016 arrived, and the Southern concourse opened, the pedestrian routes were manned by additional staff. An in-station promotional awareness campaign was also undertaken.

Outcomes

  • Option 14A was successful in safely achieving the desired pedestrian flow when the Southern concourse opened
  • Because customer-facing priorities had been accommodated into the construction phasing, delivery could take place without stakeholder anxiety
  • Project success was achieved through collaboration by all partners, resulting in the selection of the best fitting solution

Once passengers became used to the new pedestrian layouts, the project undertook further studies analysing where pedestrian routes could be modified to release improves access for construction.