Barking Riverside residents' frustration at new station delay
Alastair Lockhart, LDRS
- Credit: Alastair Lockhart
Residents at Barking Riverside have revealed their frustration at the ongoing wait for a new train station to open.
Barking Riverside station will not open until at least autumn 2022 after construction was halted at the start of the coronavirus pandemic in March last year.
The new London Overground stop was first intended to be ready in December.
It will add 4.5 km of track to the Gospel Oak to Barking line.
The cost of the project has also risen from an original estimate of £260 million to more than £327 million.
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The station is part of a multi-million pound development project, with plans for new leisure centres, shopping centres, and more than 10,000 new homes.
An Uber Boat service operated by Thames Clippers is anticipated to begin running next spring.
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The boat will provide access from Barking Riverside to Canary Wharf in five minutes and transport to central London in 45 minutes.
Hundreds of new flats and houses have already been built at Barking Riverside but some new residents have been left disappointed at the delay of the station’s opening.
Until the station opens, those living in the area will have to take the bus service to Barking station.
Resident Mohammed Mohiuddin described the situation as “awful”.
“It takes half an hour more to get to my workplace,” he said. “I’m hoping the boat service will open, [it] should be more simple.”
Mohammed added that he understood the difficulties faced by Transport for London in building the station on time.
“I give them the benefit of the doubt because of Covid,” he said.
Another resident, Hossain Moazzam, echoed concerns about the station.
He said: “It’s taking [a] longer time and I need to get the bus to Barking station… so that costs us extra money and time.”
He added that when he had purchased his new home in the area he was “under the impression that the station would be open.”
Despite the added travel time, some residents added that the inconvenience has been minimised by the bus connection to Barking station, particularly as many are still working from home.
David Rowe, head of major projects sponsorship at TfL, said work on site restarted last summer.
He added: "There has been real progress on the project including a fully constructed viaduct that will carry the new railway and work at Barking Riverside station is now nearing completion.
“However, the pause to work, coupled with having to divert or redesign around previously unidentified buried utilities, means that we now expect to complete the extension by autumn 2022."