Cannock Chase Council’s Cabinet has agreed to allocate £231,000 of Council funding towards the cost of producing a business case to upgrade Cannock Railway Station. The decision was taken at its meeting held yesterday (13 December).
The total cost of the outline business case is £400,000 and will be met from three sources; £129,000 from the joint investment fund (agreed with Staffordshire County Council), £40,000 from West Midlands Rail Executive (WMRE) and West Midlands Trains, with the balance of £231,000 coming from Cannock Chase Council.
The key elements of the development of the business case will consider the feasibility of a number of potential improvement works including platform extension and widening, creation of a multi-deck car park, public realm enhancements including possible information points/café and improved bus interchange for connections to the McArthurGlen designer outlet in Cannock and the town centre.
Initial design and master planning work for Cannock Railway Station was commissioned by the Chase Line Station Alliance and was completed in March 2018. The work included conceptual plans and costings. Now work is required to develop the outline business case for this scheme.
The Council is working closely with a range of partners to progress the development of the business case including; West Midlands Rail Executive, Network Rail, West Midlands Trains and Staffordshire County Council.
Councillor Gordon Alcott, Portfolio Leader for Economic Development and Planning said:
“Cannock Railway Station currently offers a very basic level of facilities for passengers and is an unattractive gateway into the District. The station is in need of upgrade and investment to provide a modern and inviting facility for rail passengers and visitors to the area and to complement the exciting new designer outlet when it opens.
“Although the proposals are at an early stage and there is no guarantee of securing funding to fund the improvement works, the development of the business case is an important first step and will ensure that we are in the best possible position to bid for funding in the future.
“We anticipate that the business case will help to demonstrate that improvements to the railway station will deliver significant economic benefits to the District as well as reducing congestion on the District’s roads.”
Work will now progress to develop an outline business case for an improvement scheme for Cannock Railway Station, with consultants to be appointed in early 2019, and a completed business case to be presented to Cabinet in September 2019.
Although Cannock Railway Station has recently benefitted from new shelters and signage, the platforms remain as pictured.