Unblocking the Croydon bottleneck

We are proposing an upgrade to the Brighton Main Line, to provide more reliable, more frequent and faster services for the 300,000 passengers who rely on it each weekday, and to provide the capacity needed for future growth.

Aerial shot of the Selhurst triangle or Croydon bottleneck

The Croydon Area Remodelling Scheme

The Croydon Area Remodelling Scheme (CARS) is the largest and most complex part of our longer-term Brighton Main Line upgrade proposals.

CARS would remove the most operationally challenging bottleneck on Britain’s railway network, located in the ‘Selhurst triangle’, the junctions north of East Croydon, and through East Croydon station.

The bottleneck at Croydon causes delay and knock-on delay across the network every time an incident occurs and it means there is no capacity to run more trains to meet future passenger growth, leading to overcrowding in the years ahead unless action is taken.

We propose to unblock the bottleneck to provide more frequent, more reliable services across the Brighton Main Line and its branches.

To fully deliver our proposals we would need to obtain powers, through a Transport and Works Act Order (TWAO), to work outside the railway boundary.

We are currently in the process of preparing an application for these powers, referred to as the East Croydon to Selhurst Junction Capacity Enhancement Scheme (“the Scheme”).

First public consultation

From 5 November to 17 December 2018, we held our first consultation on the Scheme.

For our first round of public consultation we held 11 public events in the Croydon area, over 20 passenger engagement events across the route and people could also view and comment on the proposals on-line.

A total of 840 people responded to our consultation. Of the 840 responses, 70% came from Croydon and South London residents, while the remaining 30% came from across the route and some from further afield.

Consultees were asked whether they agreed or disagreed with the concept of unblocking the railway bottleneck at Croydon. Over 90% of people who responded either agreed or strongly agreed with the proposals. 7% were undecided and 2% disagreed or strongly disagreed with the proposals.

Some of the most common comments were;

  • to progress as quickly as possible
  • more information please
  • concerns over disruption during construction, both to the train services and the road network; and
  • strong support for Norwood Junction station redevelopment.

View the feedback summary report

Norwood Junction

Feedback from the first public consultation indicated that people were very interested in our proposals to rebuild platforms, add extra track and make Norwood Junction station accessible. The proposals do not form part of our TWAO consultation as the work will take place entirely within the railway boundary, but they are a key enabler for our proposals to unblock the bottleneck at Croydon.

Based on the high level of interest in these proposals we plan to hold public information sessions from 17 June this summer. Find out more on our Norwood Junction page.

Next steps

We are continuing to work through detailed feedback from the first public consultation which has already resulted in some changes to our designs. These designs are still developing, and we will now formally consult on our proposals to unblock Croydon bottleneck in early 2020.

Our proposals are unfunded, as are other elements of our Brighton Main Line strategy. While we develop our plans, we will also be making the case for investment in this vital growth corridor.

For more information on our proposals you can e-mail us at consultation@CARS2.networkrail.co.uk

You can also call our National Helpline on 03457 11 41 41 or contact us on Twitter @NetworkRailSE.

To unblock the Croydon bottleneck and provide more reliable, more frequent and faster services we are developing proposals to provide:

An expanded and enhanced East Croydon station

A rebuilt station with two additional platforms, a larger concourse with improved facilities for passengers and better connections with the town centre and other transport links, supporting the ongoing regeneration of central Croydon. These new station works would also be designed to allow for new offices and homes to be built next to the new station in the future.

‘Selhurst triangle’ remodelling

We would improve track layouts north of East Croydon station and remodel the junctions at the ‘Selhurst triangle’, by removing the existing junctions and building new flyovers and dive-unders.

Lower Addiscombe Road/Windmill Bridge reconstruction

To remodel ‘Selhurst triangle’ junctions and provide more platforms at East Croydon station we would need to expand the railway north of East Croydon station. This would require the current bridge over the railway to be rebuilt to provide space for additional tracks.

To unblock the Croydon bottleneck and provide more reliable, more frequent and faster services we are developing proposals to provide:

An expanded and enhanced East Croydon station

A rebuilt station with two additional platforms, a larger concourse with improved facilities for passengers and better connections with the town centre and other transport links, supporting the ongoing regeneration of central Croydon. These new station works would also be designed to allow for new offices and homes to be built next to the new station in the future.

‘Selhurst triangle’ remodelling

We would improve track layouts north of East Croydon station and remodel the junctions at the ‘Selhurst triangle’, by removing the existing junctions and building new flyovers and dive-unders.

Lower Addiscombe Road/Windmill Bridge reconstruction

To remodel ‘Selhurst triangle’ junctions and provide more platforms at East Croydon station we would need to expand the railway north of East Croydon station. This would require the current bridge over the railway to be rebuilt to provide space for additional tracks.

Contact us

For more information on our proposals you can e-mail us at consulation@CARS2.networkrail.co.uk

You can also call Network Rail’s National Helpline on 03457 11 41 41 or contact us on Twitter @NetworkRailSE

View our privacy notice for The East Croydon to Selhurst Junction Capacity Enhancement Project.