Challenge 5: Being a Good Neighbour

Synopsis: How could new and existing technologies help minimize disruption to passengers and communities during construction of HS2 and make our new HS2 Stations perform even better for everyone?

HS2’s Customer Experience Vision at stations aspires to:

  • Put the CUSTOMER IN-CONTROL by creating a genuinely better customer experience by providing choice and perception of control which, reduces stress, personalises services and delivers loyalty through experience;
  • Provide DYNAMIC USE thereby facilitating customer need-led experiences for work, rest and play, is community enriching, is accessible and inclusive and is flexible to different customer types; and
  • Promotes INTUITIVE INTERACTIONS which deliver a seamless customer-led station experience, avoids cognitive overload, is barrier free and provides intuitive navigation and communications.

Euston should be used as the case study for this challenge, however other stations may be used to prove concepts.

The functionality of Euston as a train station will remain the same throughout construction and beyond 2033 however, we should be mindful of the changing uses of stations as destinations and the role that they can play in economic regeneration and provision of a community facility.

User needs include access and egress from the station, provision of transport services and interchange, customer services, information, customer assistance including assisting customers with reduced mobility, the provision of ticketing facilities including validation, and the ability to be able to enjoy time at the stations.

HS2 designs services based on user needs and actors with the system of the station:

  • Local community including residents and businesses;
  • Customers of the station who can be visitors to the station such as people meeting friends and family and users of the retail for shopping, meetings and leisure;
  • Passengers;
  • Station staff including rail and retail; and
  • Other transport providers

Euston station concourse is constrained and the construction programme over the next 20-years will put the environment under more duress for customers, the community and staff. Given the current issues and constraints during the construction programme we therefore need to consider how:

  • We can maintain and improve the customer experience;
  • We can minimize the disruption to the community, customers and staff; and
  • We can continue to maximize rail and retail revenue at the station.

The following five areas need to be considered in this challenge:

  • We have a lack of knowledge and information about our customers and what they like to do when they are at train stations
    • Industry standard passenger modelling is un-dynamic and does not allow real time planning or reaction to the live environment
    • How do passengers use and get to and from the station, how long do they dwell at the station, how do they spend their time, how do they like to spend their time, and how fast do they move around
  • Maintaining accessibility and mobility
    • Maintain walking routes and access to facilities, accessible routes and assistance for customers with reduced mobility, including interface with other transport modes
  • Lack of permeability of the station
    • Improve connection and permeability to the local community including walking routes, facilities
    • Consider the needs of the local users and people who need to connect with other stations and modes of transport in the area – Euston Square, Russell Square, and King’s Cross St Pancras – and local facilities including hospitals, museums, education and parks.
  • Anticipate and mitigate the impacts of construction on station users and the community
    • Information provision – updating users on wayfinding and using other means of communication not just one large information board that adds to anxiety and congestion
    • Managing perturbation and major incidents 
  • Station safety and security
    • Maintaining a safe and secure environment at the station during construction
    • Slips trips and falls. Maintenance and cleaning

Output: open

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