The first design images have been revealed of Washwood Heath Depot, HS2’s maintenance facility and main control centre for the whole HS2 network, which will create over 550 jobs in the local area.
The site, north east of Birmingham city centre, is where HS2 trains will be maintained, serviced and stored when not in use, and includes the Maintenance Building, Network Integrated Control Centre (NICC) and Cleaners and Drivers Building. All the buildings have been designed to celebrate engineering and provide sustainable working, as well as outdoor amenity spaces for staff.
The design of the buildings provides for a high level of controlled, natural lighting and reduces the need for artificial lighting during the daytime. Solar roof panels, reusing rainwater runoff from some of the building roofs, sustainable drainage, renewable energy, low carbon materials and intelligent lighting provide additional environmental benefits during construction and operation.
Landscape design and green spaces play a key role, with each building having a specifically designed landscape theme, outdoor social spaces for staff, and areas which restore biodiversity and wider habitat connections.
Accessibility for pedestrians and cyclists has been incorporated into the design, with dedicated pedestrian and cyclist routes connecting with Birmingham’s future transport network. In addition to car parks, provision is included for electric vehicle charging points, cycle and motorcycle parking for staff and visitors, and parking for individuals with limited mobility at all depot facilities, alongside taxi and delivery vehicle drop off zones.
The designs have been produced by HS2’s Engineering Delivery Partnership (EDP).
Richard Kirkham, HS2’s Head of Delivery Project said:
“Our design team have been focused on ensuring sustainability is incorporated into our Washwood Heath Depot site and it is a great example of HS2’s environmental ambitions. It’s also a pivotal site providing hundreds of crucial jobs for people in this area of Birmingham, highlighting the long-term economic benefits that HS2 is delivering for the region.
“We’re also working closely with Birmingham City Council and other key stakeholders to achieve aspirations for the wider area to the south of the Washwood Heath Depot site which provides the opportunity to create more jobs, connectivity, and environmental benefits.”
Russ Dale, Project Manager at HS2’s Engineering Delivery Partnership said:
“These images are part of an ongoing design process which will be refined and developed over the coming months by our expert team. Before we submit the designs to the local Council for approval later this year, we are sharing them with the community and asking people for feedback around areas of our design.”
The Maintenance Building will be the primary hub of operations within the site, used to maintain the HS2 train fleet along with facilities to store materials and equipment. It includes office accommodation, workshops and staff welfare facilities. Around 250 staff will work in the building, including facilities management, fleet management, production, cleaning, and depot drivers.
The Network Integrated Control Centre will oversee the whole HS2 network and is located centrally within the Washwood Heath depot site. This will be a standalone building, designed to accommodate the operational and management functions of the HS2 network. Over 100 staff will be based here, and it will include a control room, gym and canteen.
The Cleaners and Drivers Building is located in the depot’s western area and will host facilities for train servicing teams and driver training. This building will be linked to the stabling yard area, where trains will be cleaned and replenished, ready for passenger service. Around 200 staff will be based here.
The Stabling Yard area is located towards the west side of the depot site and will be where the trains are parked whilst not in operation.
Work on site to date includes demolition of buildings and groundworks to prepare the site for the construction of the new Depot and Control Centre.
Two face-to-face community information events are scheduled in July, providing a chance for residents and businesses to speak to members of the project team.