Kentish Town Station closed in June last year for essential work on the station to be carried out. Transport for London has revealed that the station’s escalators, which were originally installed in 1997, are “the most unreliable” on the network.
The closure was slated to be finished after one year, but the expected reopening date has now been pushed back to September. TfL confirmed that this is due to “unrelated work” that also needs to be carried out, pushing the total time of closure to one year and three months.
A TfL spokesperson said: “The work to upgrade the escalators at Kentish Town Tube station is progressing well and we are on track to complete the installation of the new escalators this summer. However, during unrelated work to improve other parts of the station we identified assets that require essential repair to allow the station to operate safely.
“Our engineers are doing everything possible to reopen the station, which is projected to happen in September, while ensuring that the high standards of safety our colleagues and customers expect on the Tube are met.”
Why did Kentish Town Station shut in the first place?
They plan to replace escalators with newer high-quality models that we have on the Elizabeth Line which are expected to last up to 40 years. The aim is that these new escalators will decrease the disruption of customer’s journeys as the current model previously has.
Further work is planned to be carried out, including the removal of the ticket office that has become redundant, to realign and add additional ticket gates in order to create more space for customers. A deep clean, a fresh lick of paint, an installation of a new floor, a retiling of the walls, and a freshen-up of all of the station’s signage are all in the works to give it its makeover.
Whilst the tube station will be closed for a year and three months, Kentish Town Thameslink station will remain open for the duration of the improvements. Customers have been warned that the closure may disrupt the Thameslink service.
Advising on the closure last year, Jerry Saunders, Thameslink’s customer service director, said: “Please allow an extra few minutes to get to and from your Thameslink platform as the station will be busier than normal, especially in the evening peak, and the temporary access route is narrower.”
It has also been advised that Thameslink customers must purchase their tickets in advance as the ticket machines won’t be available at Kentish Town station.
Whilst this temporary closure may disturb certain journeys, the purpose is to improve the station for the long term and to give it the improvements it needs to run smoother for its customers. Passengers needing to use the Northern line have been advised by TfL to use Tufnell Park Station, which is a 10-minute walk from Kentish Town Tube Station.
Kentish Town Tube Station be closed until September 2024. The Thameslink service will continue to run, though it is expected to be busier than usual during this period.