Case Studies



Reading Station Area Redevelopment - Telecommunications

Reading Station Area Redevelopment - Telecommunications image Reading Station Area Redevelopment - Telecommunications image Reading Station Area Redevelopment - Telecommunications image

Reading Station Area Redevelopment was an £80m contract awarded to Costain Hochtief JV. This was one of the largest parts of Network Rail’s £850M programme to remodel and renew the routes forming Reading’s railway system.

Located at a major junction on the national rail system the station's annual passenger traffic had grown from 12.946m in 2002-2003 to 15.276m in 2011-2012. The increase in passenger and train traffic resulted in congestion with passengers suffering delays whilst waiting outside the station until platforms are available. The annual passenger figure is expected to double by 2030.

Under the project the number of platforms was increased from 10 to 15. The footbridge over the tracks was replaced by a much higher capacity ‘transfer deck’ and staircases from it down to the platforms replaced by escalators. Additionally, new buildings were constructed at the north and south entrances of the station, a new roof was built across the site and virtually the entire station infrastructure renewed.

Fourway designed and delivered all features of the programme's telecommunications through a series of different contracts. The principal systems included site-wide telephony, IT, customer information systems, CCTV, public address, radio and customer help points.

Fourway commenced design at GRIP 4 working with Tata and Grimshaw. This was developed into GRIP5 under Costain Hochtief. Our design included full acoustic modelling of the new station. The CCTV system was the first high-definition IP version to be implemented on UK railways. We designed two communications equipment rooms. The design also needed to factor numerous construction phases over a three year period each requiring migration and bringing into use of operational systems to ensure Reading Station's 15 million annual passengers suffered the least disruption possible.

Much of our critical migration was carried out within railway blockades. Our ability to integrate our design, planning and installation teams within the wider project team was an important factor in ensuring these did not overrun. Outside the blockades Reading Station remained open for the full construction programme.

Fourway master minded the entire systems migration for the Programme, providing a 'guiding mind' to ensure all strands of this complex project were brought together.

Fourway also dealt with a range of stakeholders including the First Great Western, Reading Borough Council and Thames Valley Police. The three Guineas Pub was listed and our installation in this area was subject to consent. Our role was to ensure the needs of all these stakeholders were met and the Programme's excellent reputation was maintained.

Our facility at Cheshunt co-ordinated the build of over 1000 assemblies including 19 equipment racks and a control room desk. This lead to significant reductions in site time and a superior quality end product.

Control Rooms
We designed the new control room for the station including small power, furniture and control desk. We employed and co-ordinated the human factors specialist. The control desk was pre-assembled in Cheshunt to reduce the risk of site installation.

Station Management System
We designed the SMS from a blank sheet of paper. We structured the requirement capture process through a series of stakeholder consultations. We developed a functional design specification and through the approval of this we were able to evaluate different software available in the market. We developed the detailed design which included interfacing protocols, configuration, final wiring design and test documentation. We provided 2 workstations to control in excess of 200 cameras, the customer information system, access control system and the help point system.