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Escalator Replacement Underway at London Tube Station

Escalator shaft from the ticket office to the lower concourse; photo via IanVisits

Underneath South Kensington tube station in London, a project is underway to replace all five of the station’s escalators at the same time, according to IanVisits. To do that, Piccadilly line trains have stopped calling at South Kensington station and won’t call there again until next spring. Two escalators lead from the ticket hall to a concourse just below ground, and three escalators head down to the lower level, where staircases turn right to the eastbound platform, and down to the westbound platform. The old escalators were installed in the 1970s and are now in need of replacing. In most stations, there is enough space to allow one escalator to be taken out of action while passengers use stairs to go down and the other escalators to go up, but limited space at South Kensington prevents this. The source reports that old concrete was being broken up to make room for the new escalators, which are expected to arrive in September. Working on all five escalators at the same time allows the station to be brought back into operation as quickly as possible. Twenty-five of the new Otis escalators of the type that will be installed at South Kensington tube station are already in operation at other London Underground stations. They have also been installed on the Elizabeth line.

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