The Christmas break is over and work has recommenced on the new £5.6m train station in Portrush, with this major project on schedule to complete during the spring.
The new station is part of the wider £17m Portrush Regeneration Programme, led by the Department for Communities (DfC), to regenerate and improve the town ahead of the 148th Open, which will be hosted at Royal Portrush Golf Club this summer.
Funding for the station has been secured from the Department for Communities, who are providing around £4.6m, and the Department for Infrastructure, who are contributing over £900,000.
Phase 2 works on the site started during the autumn and these continue to progress well, with the construction of the new station building well underway, alongside the completion of two new platforms and the reconstruction of Platform 1. The existing boundary wall at Eglinton Street has also been removed as part of the work, and planning is ongoing to finalise the design and erection along this boundary of a series of creative and welcoming images synonymous with Portrush and the wider North Coast, as voted for last summer by the public.
Just before work on site stopped for Christmas, a new atrium – a skylight facility – was installed on the roof of the new station building; this will be a major architectural focal point of the project, giving a feeling of natural space and light.
John Glass, Translink Director of Infrastructure and Projects, said: ‘‘Work on the new Portrush station has made really good progress to date, and we’re looking forward to completing this important project during the next few months.
‘‘The contemporary station design is in keeping with the recent public realm enhancements made by DfC colleagues to revitalise Portrush town centre. When complete, passengers will enjoy modern facilities with enhanced passenger information and more cycle storage to encourage active travel and ‘greener’ tourism.
‘‘With over 620,000 passenger journeys per year already being made through the existing station, the new facility will allow for passenger growth and will offer a much improved passenger experience for commuters, tourists and those travelling to the town to enjoy the 148th Open.
‘‘The new station is an important vote of confidence by Translink in Portrush and in the wider Causeway Coast, helping us bring forward our vision of being ‘your first choice for travel in Northern Ireland.’ We would like to thank our stakeholders, including elected representatives, the local council and Portrush residents and traders, for their ongoing support for this major project.’’