Gunnersbury station now “dangerously overcrowded” says Ruth Cadbury

The Labour party candidate for Brentford & Isleworth constituency Ruth Cadbury says Gunnersbury tube station is now “dangerously overcrowded” at rush hour and there should be no more major building developments agreed until after the station can cope with the further increase in passengers.

The problem comes when people arriving to work at the Chiswick Business Park clash with local residents trying to leave. The business park is home to 45 companies including some of the world’s best known brands such as Discovery, PepsiCo and Starbucks, collectively employing more than 8,000 people. The sheer number of people using the station, especially at peak times, has led to severe overcrowding both in the ticket hall and on the platform. In the mornings local residents have often reported missing trains after being held back to allow arriving passengers to get off the platform. Much to the annoyance of residents who bought houses within range of Gunnersbury station to be able to use it to get to work, notices are posted at the station from time to time encouraging regular users of the station to avoid peak periods.

Local residents groups have asked Ruth to chair the Gunnersbury Station Action Group. They have been campaigning for some time for a footbridge which would link the Chiswick Business Park to Chiswick Park station, ciphering off some of the traffic, but although the need for a footbridge was recognised as early as 2001 and planning permission has been approved several times, most recently December 2015, there’s still no sign of it.

Ruth Cadbury says: “To relieve pressure on Gunnersbury, Chiswick Business Park has agreed, as part of the planning agreement for the final and largest park building, to fund a footbridge to take workers out of the north end of the park. What is irritating is that the complex legal agreement to achieve this has only just been signed off, and we are told the bridge will take another 2 years until this will be open. Meanwhile Building 7 will fill up, putting yet further pressure on the station.”

Ruth has written to Enjoy Work to see if they can encourage workers at Chiswick Business Park to use other routes. She has also written to Blackstone, the asset manager for Chiswick Business Park, to keep up the pressure on them to work towards a solution, and to Cllr Steve Curran, leader of Hounslow Council for an assurance that there will be no more major developments agreed until the congestion is alleviated.

West Chiswick & Gunnersbury Society say that “Gunnersbury Station is an accident waiting to happen”. “This situation is extremely unpleasant for all concerned – those struggling in the crush to leave the platform, those being delayed from accessing the platform and the unfortunate TfL staff on the front line having to cope with all this stress and frustration”.