For the past four years, I have written an annual post on the work around Euston to create the extension to the station for HS2, recording the area from before work started to at some point in the future, when the new station will be operational.
One year on, and in 2021, the majority of the buildings in the surrounding streets have now been demolished, and work has extended to the west of Hampstead Road, along with the grounds between Euston Station and Euston Road. Walking the area now provides an indication of just how large an area is being developed for HS2’s London terminus at Euston station.
So for 2021’s update, in today’s post are some of the photos from a walk through the area that will become Euston’s new HS2 station, following the route shown in the following map (Map © OpenStreetMap contributors).
This is the view looking west from point S in the above map, at the south western corner of the station.
The road in the foreground is what was Melton Street, which now provides one of the access routes into the works.
From this point, there are a couple of pedestrian walkways that have been created through the site:
I turned right to head towards Drummond Street. The following photo is looking along the closed Melton Street. The old Euston Underground station of Leslie Green’s distinctive design is the one remaining building on the corner of Melton Street and Drummond Street.
View across Melton Street to the left of the above photo:
Here is the turning which takes you across Melton Street to Drummond Street:
The old underground station:
Into Cobourg Street and the Exmouth Arms is still open, on the edge of the construction site.
Another access gate at the end of Cobourg Street:
From where we can look out over what was St James Gardens, which is now a large hole:
View back along Cobourg Street showing on the left the large and continuous hoardings that have been erected along the edge of the construction site:
I cut through to the Hampstead Road and started walking north. This is the junction of Cardington Street with Hampstead Road:
Walking further north along Hampstead Road and the area to the left of the street, south of the rail lines out of Euston are now another major construction site:
Work had not started here back in February 2020, and now demonstrates how large an area is being covered by the work to create the new Euston Station and HS2. The entrance to the new work area:
Obligatory camera over the wall shot to see the existing tracks running into Euston:
Walking back south along Hampstead Road, and it is not just the geographic size of the construction work, but the related infrastructure, with a number of large, temporary buildings constructed for those working on the site:
Back into Drummond Street and this is looking from the part of the street that has not been touched, through to the demolished section which now forms the pedestrian walking route to Euston station:
Although the western section of many of the surrounding streets are not being demolished, there are several works taking place along their length:
The following photo is from the junction of Euiston Street (which once went straght on) and Cobourg Street on the left:
The above photo was the location of the Bree Louise pub, here photographed just after the pub closed in 2018:
With hoardings in place in 2019:
Work blocking off Regnart Buildings:
View along Cobourg Street from the end of Euston Street:
The whole construction site is very secure, with very few points to look in and see the work underway. Tall hoardings with information about local businesses and institutes, what there is to find in the area, the history of Euston station, the future HS2 etc. line the entire site, with well protected work access points the only means of access:
Work access point at the entrance to what was the eastern section of Drummond Street:
Walking back to Euston Road, and this is the Melton Street access point:
There is now only a short length of Melton Street in use, providing access for taxis and drop offs at the station to the immediate right. The traffic lights providing access to Euston Road only seem to change to green for a couple of vehicles, resulting in a number of rather irate drivers.
Further along Euston Road, and this view is looking across the bus access road to the station, to what was green space in front of the station:
This green space is where demonstrators occupied the trees and dug tunnels a few months ago. Fencing around the site now seems to resemble some form of high secure establishment rather than a constructiion site.
Two layers of fencing, with an outer green mesh metal fence, and inner hoardings:
Indeed the whole Euston Station and HS2 construction site is the most secure of this type of construction site that I have seen. As well as the metal fencing and continuous hoardings through the site, there are plenty of orange high-vis security staff guarding entrances and walking the boundaries.
North east corner of the green space in front of the station. Closed Euston Square leading up to Euston Road on the left resulting in buses coming out of the station having to divert around Grafton Place adding to the congestion in the area:
The corner of Euston Square and Euston Road:
From the walkways and streets available to the public, there is really not much to see. The construction phase has reached what appears to be the end of demolition, there are plenty of big holes in the ground and temporary structures, but nothing yet of the new station.
According to the HS2 web site, “Phase One will open between 2029 and 2033”, so a minimum of eight more annual posts walking around Euston Station and HS2, more probably around twelve. By 2033 this area will look very different.