City of York Council commissioned Tetra Tech as Principal Contractor to carry out a ground investigation at York Railway Station. It fed into the Council’s ambitious plans in collaboration with Network Rail and LNER to transform the interchange’s facilities, enhance accessibility, and create a new public realm. The £23.5m improvement scheme will re-energise and modernise the station, reinforcing its role in connecting York to the wider region and country.
The project aimed to remove the Queen Street Road Bridge, associated embankments, existing structures, alongside redeveloping car parks and public spaces to improve the pedestrian experience.
For this development to begin, the investigation required our geo-environmental expertise to provide site-specific information on various challenges, supported by our in-house team’s archaeological reporting. Not only was this work complex and logistically challenging, it also required balancing the client’s needs against minimising development impact on the public and landowners.
Aside from York Station, we also had to investigate York Central – an area north of the station poised to become one of the largest city centre regenerations in Europe as it improves traffic flow and public spaces. It doubles as a significant step change advancement for the region in promoting the Northern Powerhouse initiative.
At each project stage, our team advised the local council whilst remaining flexible to the ground investigation’s changing nature.
With the station in such a public area, we undertook many planning measures to work around heavy traffic and pedestrian interaction, from pre-start meetings to site-walk overs with landowners ahead of fieldworks commencing. This helped lay down a more realistic programme outlook, and the trust in competence our team gained from landowners allowed for flexible site operations with reduced notification periods for land access.
We also effectively demonstrated the merits of less disruptive techniques that still yield useful technical data. Minimising disruption to local communities meant close liaising with the local council, Network Rail, Arup, and LNER when applying for road closures.
Thanks to the efficiency and experience of our multidisciplinary experts, the investigation was completed on time, below budget, with minimal environmental and social impact.
Ben Swallow, Associate Director at Tetra Tech, said: “We’re proud to have played a role in relaying the research for these works to reinvigorate one of the great central transport hubs within the UK. It’s going to create a greatly improved space for all people making use of transport there, from residents to tourists alike.”
Tetra Tech’s work on this project was shortlisted at the Ground Engineering Magazine Awards 2019 for Ground Investigation Project of the Year – Under £2m.