Southern and Thameslink rail operator says changes have made possible a one-hour service between London and Brighton and fewer disruptions
A new-look Gatwick Airport rail station opened to passengers this morning, transforming the journey from train to plane and giving passengers travelling between Brighton and London easier, faster, more reliable journeys.
A bigger, better and brighter station with a new, second concourse and airport entrance has now opened, doubling the space for the millions of passengers that use the station each year.
“This project is not just for those making their way to the airport, the work benefits passengers right across the route by giving them quicker journeys and a more reliable timetable,” said Lucy McAuliffe from Network Rail.
The first passengers to use the new concourse and airport entrance arrived on the 05.48 Thameslink Bedford to Brighton service on Platform 7.
Eight new escalators and five new lifts will provide a step change for accessibility. The lifts and escalators, along with four new stairways and widened platforms, will help passengers move between the train station and the airport more quickly and easily.
“Easier journeys from train to plane will benefit passengers across the wider network, helping keep trains running on time by removing the congestion and queuing on platforms that delay trains,” according to Network Rail.
Passengers travelling on the Brighton Main Line are already seeing the benefits of the project thanks to track upgrades that have helped reduce journey times between Brighton and London to one hour on some services.
The existing station concourse is also bigger, with new customer information systems, more ticket gates, a dedicated passenger assistance point enhancing the passenger experience and helping people move through the station more quickly.
The new concourse will now act as the entrance for people accessing the airport terminal, while the existing concourse will be for people exiting. The existing station concourse, station footbridges and the South Terminal linkspan have been refurbished and reconfigured to provide a seamless one-way system to the airport from the train station.
Jenny Saunders, from Govia Thameslink Railway, the operators of Southern, Thameslink and the Gatwick Express services, said: “The station has been struggling with the numbers using it and that holds up our trains, delaying everyone.
“This stunning redevelopment has fixed all that. I genuinely believe our customers are going to love the extra space and improved accessibility that will make the journey between train and plane quicker, easier and more attractive.”
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