Plans to build two railway stations in south Birmingham have been submitted marking significant progress on the project to reopen the Camp Hill line to passenger services.
The stations at Kings Heath and Hazelwell are set to be rebuilt and the line reopened to commuters for the first time in almost 80 years.
Plans for the third station at Moseley are undergoing further design work and will be submitted later in the year.
The new Hazelwell Station will include platforms with a canopy, stairs and lifts and a forecourt drop off/pick up area outside. Covered cycle storage will be provided and lighting and CCTV installed.
A historic station building, no longer deemed fit for purpose, will be demolished as part of the development.
As well as benefitting residents, the reopened station will encourage further investment and regeneration in Stirchley centre.
Nearby Kings Heath Station plans also include platforms with a canopy, lift and stair access and cycle storage facility. Space will also be set aside for a possible future addition of a station building.
There will be space for public art or a heritage display to reflect the history of the area and a direct walkway into Highbury Park.
Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “I am really pleased that we have taken another significant step towards reopening the Camp Hill line to passengers with the submission of these planning applications.
“As well as offering South Birmingham residents a direct train line into the city centre, the reopened line will help to ease congestion on the roads and help reduce air pollution.
“I am confident that we can have these stations open and the Camp Hill line back up and running by 2021.”
Cllr Ian Ward, WMCA portfolio holder for transport and leader of Birmingham City Council said: “Reopening the Camp Hill line is a crucial part of our plan to offer residents convenient alternatives to the car and reduce pollution and congestion on our roads.
“As well as better connecting the suburbs to the city centre and beyond, reopening the line will be the catalyst for further regeneration and investment in the Kings Heath and Stirchley areas.”
Results of a consultation last year found residents, commuters and businesses in south Birmingham overwhelmingly back plans to reopen the Camp Hill rail line. The stations closed in 1941, since when the line has been used only by freight and non-stop through-services.
Transport for the West Midlands (TfWM) and the West Midlands Rail Executive (WMRE) along with rail industry partners including Network Rail and West Midlands Trains are leading the development of the new stations.