Elizabethan Style: A Look At Crossrail’s Core Stations


To coincide with a new exhibition on Crossrail station design at the Royal Institute of British Architects, the organisation have released a series of images showing the proposed internal designs of a number of the stations in the line’s core section.

We last explored what Crossrail’s stations were likely to look like back in 2011, when we visited the architect’s full mockup in a warehouse in Leighton Buzzard. Looking at the current set of designs, what’s interesting is that many of the design elements that appeared in that mockup have survived through to the final design stage.

Before exploring the new designs, however, we shall pause and look first at some far earlier mockups. Although not officially part of the set of images Crossrail have released, these can be found in the RIBA exhibition with a little bit of hunting. They give a glimpse both into the way Crossrail was envisioned in the past, and into the early stages of concept design on projects like this. Some of them are works of art in their own right.


Undated early Crossrail concept design, possibly from the early 1990s.

These early designs are fascinating, serving as a reminder that station designs nearly always reflect, consciously or not, the period in which they are built.


Photo of an undated early model of a Crossrail station, possibly from the early 1990s

Moving into the early mockups from the project’s current incarnation, it’s clear that warm colours were a key concept early on, something that has followed through into many of the final designs.


Rough design sketch from current project


Rough design sketch from current project


Concept design for a Bond Street entrance

Moving on to the new station designs, it is clear that the overriding goal is to give passengers a relatively consistent experience at platform level whilst making ticket halls and surface spaces more unique. This was confirmed by Julian Robinson, Head of Architecture at Crossrail, at the RIBA launch event last night.

We’ve broken down all the images below by station.


01 Paddington Station - proposed platform level_235982

Paddington at platform level

01 Paddington Station - proposed ticket hall_235985

The proposed ticket hall


Another view of the ticket hall

Tottenham Court Road

Tottenham Court Road is described by Robinson as having a “jazzy feel” and elements reminiscent of drums. This is a conscious nod to its Soho surrounds.

03 Tottenham Court Road station - proposed platform level at Dean Street entrance_236020

Platform level at Tottenham Court Road

03 Tottenham Court Road station - architect_s impression of station entrance at Dean Street_236015

The view from outside the Dean Street entrance


Platform level concourse at St Giles Circus entrance

Bond Street

02 Bond Street station - proposed ticket hall on Davies Street_235991

Ticket hall on Davies Street

02 Bond Street station - proposed ticket hall on Hanover Square_235994

Ticket hall on Hanover Square

02 Bond Street station - proposed upper escalator from Davies Street ticket hall_235992

Upper escalator from Davies Street


Another view of the ticket hall on Davies street

Liverpool Street

Robinson describes Liverpool Street has having a “city pin stripe” effect.

05 Liverpool Street station - proposed escalator at Moorgate ticket hall_236006

Escalator at Moorgate ticket hall

05 Liverpool Street station - proposed upper escalator with inclined lift from Broadgate ticket hall_236013

Upper escalator with inclined lift from Broadgate ticket hall


Ticket hall at Broadgate


06 Whitechapel station - proposed upper concourse_235990

The upper concourse


Ticket hall on Mile End road


04 Farringdon station - proposed station concourse at Cowcross Street entrance_236027

The station concourse at Cowcross Street

04 Farringdon station - proposed escalator to Cowcross Street ticket hall_236037

Escalator to Cowcross Street ticket hall

04 Farringdon station - proposed platform level concourse_236036

Platform level concourse

04 Farringdon station - proposed platform_236035

Platform level


Another view of the station concourse at Cowcross Street

We will explore the thinking behind these stations, and other aspects of Crossrail’s design, next month.

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Written by John Bull
John Bull is the Editor of London Reconnections. A transport journalist and historian, his writing often focuses on the political or strategic challenges facing London's transport network and beyond.