The upgrade, which is being funded jointly by the Homes and Communities Agency through Dartford Borough Council and the government’s national stations improvement programme, includes:
- Demolition of the existing station building and re-constructing an eye-catching new three-storey structure which will provide a station fit for the 21st Century
- Creating a new concourse and ticket office which will be designed to make it easier for passengers to move around, particularly at busy times
- Installing better facilities at ground level, including new toilets, improved retail facilities and passenger information
- Creating more parking bays and a more open environment at the front of the station. This will be acieved by demolishing the existing offices for railway staff and relocating the people onto the first and second floors of the new building
- Extending the canopies on both platforms and installing new waiting facilities on platforms 1 and 2 to make it more comfortable for passengers to wait for their trains, particularly during bad weather
Dave Ward, Network Rail’s route director for Kent, said: “We want more people to choose rail to make journeys around Britain, whether for business or leisure. This means that in addition to providing a safe, punctual and reliable train service we need to give passengers the end-to-end journey experience they expect, including a station environment and modern facilities which meet their needs. The upgrade of Dartford station is a big step forward and will make a big difference for the community.”
Councillor Jeremy Kite, leader of Dartford Borough Council said: “There have been a number of twists and turns on the way to this great announcement about Dartford station and we were pleased to step in to secure the future of the project when it looked as if no one else would. The new station will be a much more practical, pleasant and modern environment for rail users. Dartford commuters and visitors will soon have the station they deserve.”
Vince Lucas, Southeastern’s service delivery director added: “Dartford is one of our busiest stations and deserves an environment to match. This project will help provide our passengers with a better experience when travelling by train and help area around the station. We will be working hard with Network Rail to ensure that there is minimal disruption to our services.”
The station will remain open to passengers throughout the construction with no disruption to the train services. A temporary station entrance and ticket office will be created to allow passengers to continue safely using the station during the 15 month construction period.
The work, which is being delivered by Network Rail, is expected to start in late Summer 2011 and be completed by Winter 2012.