Kings Cross Crossing

Project date
05.05.2014
Type
  • Guidance
Location
Greater London
Clients
Associated team members
Associated documents

As one of Europe's major regeneration projects, the transformation of the area around the London termini of King's Cross and St Pancras should meet the highest standards. Named after a monument to King George IV that was demolished before the station was opened, the surrounding area has suffered from a bad image for well over a century.

Now with huge investment - over £1000 million in the two stations alone - it is attracting thousands of new jobs as well as residents, and a growing number of international visitors as well as regular commuters. The walk from the new Northern concourse along King's Boulevard and across the Regent's Canal to the Granary, which now houses the University of the Arts. A new 'knowledge quarter' is emerging promoted by 30 organisations that are now based in the area.

By contrast, crossing the Euston Road or York Way is a great let-down, and a poor gateway to what London offers. Yet the stations' cramped positions at the crossing of London's East West Inner Ring Road, and North South traffic routes make it exceptionally difficult to handle the vast crowds of pedestrians, cyclists and vehicular traffic that all want to cross the road. So what can be done to 'close the divide'?

Taking advantage of a suitable venue at the REDHANDED art space in Cromer Street, which is a pop-up shop owned by Camden Council, and with encouragement from Robert Huxford, Director of the Urban Design Group, and positive responses from both Transport for London and Camden Council, URBED organised a half day action planning workshop. This drew together over 20 experts, many of them local, to discuss what might be done in the short-term within the budget that Transport for London has been allocated for this key Mayoral priority.

This short report sets out the main conclusions and suggests next steps. It is being circulated to all who attended for comments. Our hope is that it can not only provide a useful record for the next stage of designing a set of improvements to be implemented over the next year and a half, but also lead to a crossing worthy of a king!