New Barking Riverside Overground station to open ahead of schedule

Barking Riverside is to open this summer ahead of schedule, TfL has confirmed

The new Barking Riverside Overground station is to open this summer ahead of schedule, it has been confirmed - Credit: TfL

The new Barking Riverside extension is set to open this summer ahead of schedule, it has been confirmed.

Announcing the pleasing development earlier today - Monday, June 13 - Transport for London (TfL) has been working on the new Overground station since late 2018.

The process of adding 4.5km of track to the network has faced disruption as a result of the pandemic, with an autumn opening mooted until today's positive announcement.

Though Covid-19 slowed down construction of this new extension, work did continue despite a raft of other major transport projects coming to a halt.

Bus journeys between Barking and Barking Riverside currently take 25 minutes by bus

The 4.5km extension will drastically cut journey times from Barking to Barking Riverside, which currently takes around 25 minutes by bus - Credit: TfL

TfL has been able to bring forward the station's launch as a result of good progress made in the project's latter stages.

Trains are already running between Barking and Barking Riverside as Arriva Rail London - which operates the Overground on TfL's behalf - undertakes route testing and driver training.

Stuart Harvey, TfL’s chief capital officer, said: “The extension will be a game changer for Barking Riverside - vastly improving transport connectivity, accessibility and helping to realise plans to deliver much needed housing.”

Once open, journeys between Barking and Barking Riverside will reduce from around 25 minutes by bus to just seven on the new line.

TfL is undertaking route testing and driver training as Barking Riverside prepares to open this summer

Trains are already running between Barking and Barking Riverside while route testing and driver training takes place ahead of the station's opening - Credit: TfL

With four trains an hour, it's hoped that this will prove seismic for local travel as the wider Barking Riverside project continues to take shape.

This extension is also expected to enable the full construction of Barking Riverside, which, at 10,800 homes, represents the largest housing development in east London.

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However, planning conditions dictate that no more than 4,000 of these can be occupied before the station opens.

Once up and running, the remaining homes can be built on this 180-hectare brownfield site.

The new Overground station will offer another transport link to an area recently been boosted by River Bus services.

This has buoyed the managing director of Barking Riverside Limited, Matthew Carpen.

"Today's news will be a cause of celebration for all residents, complementing the recent extension of the River Bus service and helping connect Barking Riverside to the rest of the capital," said Mr Carpen.