Professional services company WSP has been appointed by Stockport Council to design a masterplan for Stockport Railway Station to improve services and connectivity across the region.
The project has the backing of Stockport Council, Virgin Trains, Transport for Greater Manchester, and Network Rail.
WSP's masterplan will look to strengthen Stockport's position as a key connection on the existing West Coast Main Line services, and ensure that the station benefits from the opportunities offered by Muse's nearby Stockport Exchange development.
WSP will provide Stockport Council with an integrated service, including masterplanning, rail infrastructure, economic assessment and transport planning, alongside design architect BDP and economic consultant Ekosgen.
Alongside improvements at the train station, Stockport Council and TfGM plan to create a southern orbital network for Metrolink, connecting the east of Greater Manchester to Manchester Airport via Stockport town centre. WSP said that its plan will ensure that access to Stockport is improved and that the town can secure the full benefits of High Speed Rail 2 should it come to the North West, as well as improving direct connectivity to the fast growing Manchester Airport.
Adrian Kemp, project director at WSP in Manchester, said: "More than three million passengers travel through Stockport Station each year and it acts as a major commuter hub for Manchester, with capacity set to increase year-on-year. Setting out short, medium and long-term goals to manage and facilitate this predicted growth will be a key outcome of the masterplan. We will be drawing on our extensive experience, having delivered masterplans for a number of Northern railway hubs including York and Leeds."
The final masterplan report is expected to be submitted in July 2015.