Topping out ceremony marks significant progress to new bus interchange
- Credit: Quintessential Photography
A topping out ceremony has been held at the site of the new bus interchange in Stevenage, as the final beam has now been placed on the main building.
The event was attended by representatives from Stevenage Borough Council, Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership, and contractor, Willmott Dixon.
A ‘topping out’ ceremony is traditionally held once the last beam has been placed on top of a new construction in the building trade.
Work started on the project in late 2020, part-funded by a £9.6m Local Growth Fund investment from Hertfordshire LEP, with Willmott Dixon working ahead of schedule to complete the first stages of the transport hub.
The development is set to improve transport links across the town, provide wider accessibility and align with the newly-regenerated town centre.
Works on the interchange should be completed in the coming months with services commencing thereafter.
The interchange features an extensive canopy with a large glazed screen and automatic doors for easy passenger access.
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It also includes a passenger facilities building which provides a waiting area with seating, live passenger information boards, a café kiosk and public conveniences as well as improved accessibility features.
External works include a new connection linking the bus interchange, town square and train station ensuring a clear connection between the existing cycle, bus and rail networks.
Leader of SBC Sharon Taylor said: “We are delighted to carry out this ceremony with our partners and to see the incredible progress that Willmott Dixon has made on such a key project.
"The interchange is a pivotal part of the early stages of our ongoing 20-year regeneration programme, and, when open, will provide a massive improvement on the existing setup.”
Cllr John Gardner, executive portfolio holder for regeneration, added: “The new interchange will offer a boost to the town at a time when we’re all looking to push forward following the impact of the pandemic
"This is a really exciting time for Stevenage and we’re very happy to meet with our partners, all of whom have been integral to the success of our regeneration programme.”
“We are delighted with the progress made to date on the new interchange” commented Adam Wood, head of infrastructure & regeneration at Hertfordshire LEP.
"The scheme forms a key part of our £34m Local Growth Fund investment towards the town’s regeneration, set to help bring forth new homes, public amenities, and retail and business space to maximise the town’s economic potential.”
Chris Tredget, managing director at Willmott Dixon, concluded: “It’s fantastic to be able to celebrate the ‘topping out’ of Stevenage’s new Bus Interchange and all of the progress made so far.
"Once completed, the project will make a real difference to the transport links in the town and we’re proud to be working alongside Stevenage Borough Council and Hertfordshire LEP to deliver the first stage of the town’s regeneration programme.”