Re-Imagining Railway Stations




ARCHITECTURE: Future Building or Project


7N Architects


Network Rail


For the Re-imagining Railway Stations Competition, Network Rail invited proposals that will challenge and re-imagine what a ‘station’ could become in the 21st century. 7N Architects’ winning ‘HUB Station’ concept, selected from over 200 international entries, envisions the railway as a progressive, sustainable mode of transport with a pivotal civic role in serving communities throughout the UK.

7N Architects' are currently leading a design team including Arup, LUC and Gardiner & Theobald, working with Network Rail to develop design guidance including station prototypes and kit of parts that will inform the design and construction of new and upgraded stations.

Running in parallel with the design process, ExploreStatation is an extensive nationwide consultation programme of online and in person events to gather feedback from across the UK to inform developing designs.

Connecting Communities

The proposals seek to enhance the significance of a station within a local community by making it a focal point for the community, signified by the clock tower, a new local landmark. The proposed station environment extends beyond the platform to create civic spaces to welcome travellers and provide a placemaking framework to accommodate a diverse mix of permanent and pop-up uses to give local people and visitors a reason to gather and linger. A “welcome mat” of landscaped public realm defines these spaces and reflects local character through a tailored design response to each location, based on common design principles, employing local materials, craftsmanship and regional plant species to embed it in the local context

Sustainable Transport Hubs

The aim is to create vibrant sustainable transport hubs and harness the potential of stations to be highly visible exemplars in environmentally sustainable design. Sustainable design principles are embedded in our approach and the design process is informed by whole-life carbon analysis. This starts with interrogating new station briefs to avoid under or over-providing facilities, minimising embodied carbon through low carbon materials like the glue-laminated timber canopy structure, efficient off-site construction methodologies, and making stations as self-sufficient as possible by minimising energy usage and on-site renewable generation like the translucent photo-voltaic canopy.

The project has national significance and 7N’s final designs and guidance, due for publication in summer 2022, will apply to more than 2000 small and medium stations across the Britain.



Visualisations by Pillar Visuals