HS2 transformation plan for Sheffield railway station 'could cost £800m'

Up to £800m of public money could be spent on transforming Sheffield railway station and surrounding areas to adapt it for the arrival of HS2, it has been revealed.

A report presented to the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership Board last week listed the figure as the estimated cost, with a further £25m to be spent at Chesterfield railway station.

A range of different options for the Sheffield masterplan are being explored, with finalised proposals due next year. Sheffield’s existing railway station is due to be revamped to handle both HS2 and standard rail services when the high-speed line starts in 2033.

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The report, jointly compiled by commercial property and real estate consultants Cushman & Wakefield, design and engineering company Arup and economic development and regeneration specialist ekosgen, states detailed project plans have been prepared for the “redevelopment of Sheffield Midland Station and immediate environs to create a new high-quality arrival point”.

An artist's impression of what the new Sheffield HS2 station could look like was made public earlier this year.

All the Yorkshire communities set to be bulldozed for HS2The report said a preliminary figure of “circa £800m” has been put on the Sheffield work but adds this is “based on an early concept design”.

“However, a detailed masterplan is currently being carried out which will look at four options to achieve improvements around the station and meet the needs of HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail with varying levels of funding intervention required,” the report added. “Once this is complete a new detailed Station Investment Strategy will be undertaken to inform the final Growth Strategy.”

The report said funding/finance for the work will involve the ringfencing of Community Infrastructure Levy planning charges on developers, the use of future property tax revenues and ‘direct property land and property investment’. The Government will be asked to provide a grant towards some of the work.

The report also said that Cushman & Wakefield have reviewed “the potential land and property impacts of the proposed high-speed rail investments” within 1km of the station but did not give any further details.

Last month, it was revealed plans to build a new £500m HS2 station in Leeds would result in the demolition of dozens of existing businesses, with almost 5,000 city centre jobs “being displaced or possibly lost”.Details of the emerging Sheffield proposals have emerged following engineering firm Atkins being appointed to lead a consortium in developing a new masterplan for Sheffield Midland Railway Station.

At the time, Sheffield Council said the consortium will aim to ensure “not only make sure the station offers a fitting environment when HS2 services begin, but also to unlock the development potential of the surrounding area over the next 20 years; enhance passenger experience in and around the station; and improve connectivity to the station for rail, tram and bus users as well as cyclists and pedestrians”.

All the Yorkshire roads and motorways being closed or diverted by HS2Mike Gardner, Atkins Project Director, said in August: “We’re also planning beyond the station to ensure that adjacent commercial and residential developments are a catalyst for delivering the city’s wider growth and regeneration ambitions.”

A spokesman for Sheffield Council told The Yorkshire Post today that the development of the masterplan is due to continue “until at least the middle of next year”, with some consultations events already underway.

Sheffield Council predicts there will be a 15 per cent growth in demand for public transport in the city by 2024.

A plan called ‘This is Sheffield’, released earlier this year, predicted increased demand will be driven by the arrival of up to 25,000 new jobs in city between 2014 and 2024.

Councillor Mazher Iqbal, cabinet member for business and investment at SCC, said in August: “The station is absolutely central to our city centre masterplan vision to deliver new jobs, businesses and opportunities to the region. I look forward to seeing the plans take shape to deliver thousands of new jobs for our economy.”