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Nightmare on Curzon Street

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Birmingham Curzon Street HS2 station aerial view, artist's impressionPrevious posts on this blog have signalled the disconnectivity and inconvenience built into the Birmingham HS2 terminal arrangements.

The recently released HS2 Ltd bird’s eye impression of Curzon Street from above, gives a new angle on these shortcomings. The station is also revealed as a charmless steel box – a throwback to the failed reinvention of the city centre in the 1960s.

On April 21, the Birmingham Post reported that “the 1838-built Grade I-listed frontage of Curzon Street station would be “the main entrance” to the Curzon Street HS2 terminal (and gave a different artist’s impression of the terminal, by Glenn Howells architects). However, the HS2 Ltd artist’s impression suggests that the Cumbernauld style entrance over Moor Street would be the principal access. The 1838 Curzon Street building is lost alongside, and overshadowed by, the massive steel box of the terminal platforms.

Because of the £17 billion cost, it’s almost inevitable that the air rights above the platforms would be sold, but that doesn’t figure in either view. In Birmingham, exploitation of air rights took place at both New Street and Snow Hill stations, and the consequences of this are abundantly clear to anyone who has set foot in them.

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  1. […] people arriving at Curzon Street in the rear of a captive HS2 train, the distance to a New Street connecting train would be over 1 […]


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