The new Perry Barr Railway Station is set to open its doors to passengers for the first time this Sunday having been taken just a year to completely rebuild.
The modern accessible station stands at the heart of a rapidly changing Perry Barr and will be a key gateway for visitors to Alexander Stadium for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games this summer – something celebrated on the station’s sport themed frieze.
New facilities for passengers include a ticket office, accessible toilet and baby change facilities as well as lifts and stairs to the platform. The station provides regular, fast and direct West Midlands Railway services to Birmingham city centre, Walsall and Wolverhampton.
Jonny Wiseman (West Midlands Railway), Amanda White (WMRE/TfWM), Cllr Ian Ward and Malcolm Holmes (TfWM/WMRE)
Building work began last May with the demolition of the unattractive old station and parade of shops and has continued at pace since with the project delivered on time and on budget.
The railway station and bus interchange project partnership includes Transport for West Midlands (TfWM), which is part of the West Midland Combined Authority (WMCA), the West Midlands Rail Executive, Birmingham City Council, Network Rail and West Midlands Trains.
Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands and Chair of the WMCA, said: “The Commonwealth Games this Summer, beyond being 11 exciting days of sporting spectacle, have the potential to deliver a lasting legacy for the people of the West Midlands for generations to come.
“This new station at Perry Barr is a great example of what that lasting legacy for our region actually means. It is a vast improvement on the old station – better lit, more spacious and equipped with much better facilities including lifts to the platform. This is brilliant news for residents but also for Games visitors making their way to the stadium nearby.
“I congratulate everyone involved on getting the project finished on budget and on time and look forward to this station serving the local community for many years to come.”
Cllr Ian Ward, WMCA portfolio holder for transport and leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “This new station is just one part of the remarkable transformation of Perry Barr taking place right now – with thousands of new homes and investment in the Sprint bus corridor and safe cycle route to make it one of the best connected parts of the city.
“It is vital that we provide modern and attractive public transport infrastructure like the new Perry Barr railway station for our people if we are to encourage them to reduce car use and traffic congestion, improve our air quality and help us meet our climate change targets.”
Jonny Wiseman, customer experience director for station operator West Midlands Railway, said: “This transformation has taken Perry Barr from being one of the most outdated stations on the network to one of the smartest. I am certain it will prove a hit with our customers.
“I would like to thank passengers for their patience while the station has been closed for redevelopment and we look forward to welcoming people back on board soon.”
Neil Gaskin, Network Rail’s programme director for the Commonwealth Games, said: “It’s been amazing to work with partners across the West Midlands to safely and successfully deliver the much-improved Perry Barr station building ahead of the Commonwealth Games this summer.
“We can’t wait for station users from near and far to enjoy the new facilities as we begin Birmingham’s exciting summer of sport.”
Funding has been provided by the WMCA, Birmingham City Council, Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.
The £30.9 million project costs include the redevelopment of the bus interchange outside the neighbouring One Stop Shopping Centre. This is set to be completed ahead of the Commonwealth Games.
David Hardman, interim deputy chair of Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) said: “This summer’s Commonwealth Games is soon approaching so it’s great that Perry Barr Station is ready for the thousands of visitors that are expected to visit the transformed Alexander Stadium.
“Along with other partners, we’ve worked collaboratively to ensure legacy was at the heart of this area’s regeneration. After the Games end, GBSLEP’s £3.5 million investment into the train and bus interchange will benefit local people and businesses for years to come. This is critical to our mission to drive forward inclusive and sustainable growth to support our local economy and the wider region.”
Perry Barr is just 13 minutes from Birmingham city centre and 15 minutes from Walsall town centre by train.
The redevelopment is part of a £700m+ package of investment into north west Birmingham, including new homes, upgraded and new transport infrastructure and the provision of new community facilities including the redeveloped Alexander Stadium, all of which is underpinned by the new Perry Barr 2040 Masterplan.