The Waverley Masterplan exercise, which is led by Network Rail and Edinburgh City Council, will consider the future growth anticipated at the station, the impact of city centre developments, urban planning trends and how Waverley can be enhanced. The plan will present a vision for the future of the station and will be used to explore future development via phased investment over the next 30 years.
Annual passenger numbers are expected to pass 49 million by 2048. A team of engineers, architects and urban planners, led by Arup, have analysed the usage patterns of the existing station and have proposed various ideas aimed at ensuring the station can cope in the longer term. Requirements include boosting passenger space to avoid crowding and congestion and improving accessibility from the Old Town, Waverley Bridge and Princes Street whilst also seeking to deliver a modern station.
Early work has now been completed and views are being sought from the public on a preferred strategy. This public engagement phase of the masterplan began yesterday (25th March) and will continue to 26th April.
Following the completion of the public exhibition, feedback will be considered and incorporated into further development work that will ultimately result in a published masterplan in September 2019.
Alex Hynes, managing director of the ScotRail Alliance, which includes Network Rail Scotland, said: “The work of the masterplan team to date suggests that some ambitious improvements to the layout of the station will be required to enable Waverley to meet the future needs of the station, the city and the country. Before a completed Waverley Masterplan is published, we are keen to listen to the views of our customers and stakeholders. With passenger numbers continuing to grow, ‘doing nothing’ is not an option.”
Lesley Macinnes, convener of the council’s transport and environment committee, said: “Waverley Station is pivotal to our city’s public transport offering, so it’s essential that we provide a modern, accessible facility to welcome the millions of passengers passing through each year, encouraging trips by train and enabling seamless onward journeys in Edinburgh.”
Michael Matheson, cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity said: “It is vital that we do not lose sight of Waverley’s distinctive character. By engaging, listening, developing and testing concepts we will be better able to deliver a future-proofed station that focuses on the passenger experience within its distinctive world-class setting. That is why I encourage Edinburgh residents, rail commuters and visitors to make their views known and engage positively in shaping the future for Waverley.”