As the constituency continues to attract new businesses and housing developments, so the pressure on the transport infrastructure increases. There are some improvements on the way in the long term that may help to ease this and I intend to work hard with all the parties involved to bring these forward wherever possible.
There are also a number of particularly critical issues that I was involved in during my time in Parliament and which continue to require strong leadership to address:
Stop at Turnham Green Campaign
One of my top priorities for Chiswick residents has been to get Piccadilly line trains to finally stop at Turnham Green Station during the day. During my previous time in office I was able to persuade the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, to allow trains to stop at Turnham Green when the signalling upgrades to the line have been completed in the early 2020's.
However I would still like to see this date brought forward, along with trying to persuade Transport for London to stop Piccadilly line trains at Turnham Green during off-peak hours now.
Overcrowding at Gunnersbury Station
Gunnersbury Station is a busy West London tube station between Brentford and Chiswick. Local residents using the station will know that it is no longer fit for purpose. The station has seen a significant and rapid increase in passengers in recent years, caused by a number of important local factors.
These include the growth of Chiswick Park, the approval of Brentford Football Club’s new stadium and the expansion of Sky’s campus in Osterley. These factors, along with existing problems with congestion and platform design, have left the station unprepared for future challenges and population growth.
The two main problems facing the station are congestion and safety. A single staircase connects the station platform and ticket hall. There are lengthy queues to exit the station, especially at peak times. As a result of this, safety is a significant problem as passengers try to fit on narrow platforms.
I established the Gunnersbury Station Action Team (GSAT) in 2013 to push for improvements at the station. The meetings are attended by local residents, businesses, Transport for London, Network Rail, Hermes Pensions Management (who own the surrounding land) and other stakeholders. GSAT's work has led to real improvements to the station and the group continues to press for further improvements.
Achievements so far
1. Establishing GSAT in 2013 to look at improving the station.
2. Transport for London agree to rearrange the platform furniture. The Underground maps and sheltered waiting area will be moved further down the platform, creating more space for passengers to gather at the foot of the stairs.
3. Network Rail agree to conduct a feasibility study to explore options for long term redevelopment of the station.
4. Hermes, who own Chiswick Tower and the neighbouring car parks, have now engaged architects to consider options for a residential development which would allow for long term improvements to the station.