The Liverpool City Region’s Station Commission has kick started the development of proposals for a world-class rail station in Liverpool City Centre.
The Commission, which met yesterday (Tuesday 15 December) was created by Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram and will design a blueprint for taking forward proposals for a new station in the City Centre, to enable the city region’s connection to HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail.
Chaired by Everton Football Club CEO Denise Barrett-Baxendale, the Commission is tasked with not only identifying and considering options for the station’s location, size and functions, but also the potential for significant regeneration and redevelopment associated with a new city centre station.
Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram said:
“I want our region maximise the huge opportunities that HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail offer. The current capacity at Lime Street isn’t enough to cope with significantly larger high-speed trains, so we want to construct a brand-new station that will provide world-class facilities to welcome visitors to our world-class city region.
“When it is built, it will be much more than a rail station. I want it to be an architecturally stunning gateway which offers a mix of leisure, retail and office accommodation.
“I have always said that connectivity is critical to our ambitious proposals. Having the facility for improved services North/South, but also West/East, would both cut passenger journey times whilst also increasing freight capacity, bringing much needed environmental, social and economic benefits for our area and the whole country.”
Due to the complexities associated with any large infrastructure project, the commission brings together a range of experts from across the worlds of transport, business and the public sector.
They will inform and support the development of business cases, feasibility studies, economic analysis and master planning as proposals progress, ensuring integration with relevant external programmes, such as Northern Powerhouse Rail.
Transport for the North’s Strategic Transport Plan includes plans to ensure that Liverpool City Region will benefit from a full connection to both Northern Powerhouse Rail and HS2. The plan also recognises the need for a new station to accommodate new 21st century trains and to link HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail in to the city region’s local transport infrastructure.
Professor Denise Barrett-Baxendale, Chief Executive of Everton Football Club, said:
“I am honoured to Chair the Station Commission to deliver a new train station connecting the Liverpool City Region to the high-speed rail project HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail. The project will not only create a world-class transport hub and gateway to the Liverpool City Region which is fit for the 21st century, it will bring optimism and opportunity as we emerge from the effects of COVID-19.
“The city region is faced with the momentous task of rebuilding its economy after the pandemic. This project is exactly what is needed to boost the region and bring much needed jobs and prosperity to the area, something I am extremely passionate about and committed to.
“I am under no illusions – projects such as this do not materialise overnight – but I will use my experience to lead the Station Commission and bring this project to fruition.
“I look forward to collaborating with colleagues on the board and promise to drive this project forward for the people of the Liverpool City Region.”
Councillor Wendy Simon, Acting Mayor of Liverpool, said:
“The work of this commission has the potential to massively transform Liverpool’s connectivity with London and the rest of the UK, and to be a key engine in our economic growth for generations to come.
“The case for a new world-class station in Liverpool that connects the city region to HS2 has been well made – now the real work begins on designing how this hugely exciting scheme could be implemented.
“I look forward to working with our partners to set out the blueprint for this station and how it can be utilised to stimulate the wider regeneration of the surrounding area, and the city council will provide all its full support in this process.”