Work Commences on New Oxford Parkway
Rail Station Site
Disused grain silo at Water Eaton © Copyright Sarah Charlesworth and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
The huge Water Eaton silo, some seven stories high, was built in the 1940s but closed in the 1980s and was a well known ‘blot on the landscape’ for commuters driving into Oxford and for pilots landing at London Oxford Airport.
Ready for services into central London via Marylebone by the summer of 2015, Oxford Parkway will have a car park with more than 800 spaces and provide fast trains to London and local services to Oxford, Bicester and High Wycombe for the first time in over 40 years. Wembley stadium will also be directly linked in under 45 minutes.
Once established, London Oxford Airport will join a growing list of alternative airports around London where passengers can connect to commercial air services in a little over an hour from a London rail terminal to airport check-in desk, including the likes of Southend and Cambridge airports, both of whom have also re-introduced commercial airline routes in the last couple of years.
The new rail link will also open the door in the future for a proposed East-West rail connection to Milton-Keynes and beyond to Bletchley and East Anglia, bringing Milton-Keynes residents to the airport in just over half an hour.
First services are expected to run every 30 minutes in both directions with every train stopping at Bicester where passengers will have access to the world’s most profitable (per square metre) shopping outlet centre, Bicester village, with over 140 stores and nearly 7 million visitors each year.
Whilst the country awaits the conclusions of the Davies Commission report on the future need for additional hub airport capacity, the likes of London Oxford Airport, on the periphery of the capital and within an hour’s access time, provide comparable front door to take-off times as the major commercial airport options, indeed in some cases quicker alternatives. The benefit of the smaller regional airports are the notably simpler and faster passenger processing times including car parking, check-in, baggage processing, security, immigration and customs checks with no long walks through vast terminal infrastructure.
From landing at Oxford to exiting the airport entrance having collected your bags can take as little as five minutes, whilst arrival at check-in to take-off times is commonly under half an hour. Add to that a shuttle bus or taxi ride to the new Oxford Parkway station and from landing to walking off the platform at Marylebone in central London will often be as little as an hour and a half. That compares favourably with the experience using the likes of Stansted, Gatwick or Heathrow where customs, immigration and baggage pick-up waiting times put those airports at a distinct disadvantage to the smaller regional airport operations.
There are also distinct benefits to being connected to Marylebone rail station which is in the heart of London, one of the best located stations, within walking distance of Oxford Street. As well as its own tube station on the Bakerloo line, Marylebone is close to major bus routes and is just a 5 minute walk from Baker Street tube station served by the Jubilee, Bakerloo, Circle, Hammersmith and City and Metropolitan tube lines, providing quick links to the City and Canary Wharf.
London Oxford Airport’s James Dillon-Godfray, Business Development Director, commented “having been waiting for several years for this south Kidlington rail station proposal to come to fruition, this is the first tangible sign of progress with the iconic grain silo coming down. We’re soon going to have the ground transportation infrastructure to go hand-in hand with our aspirations to be a useful regional airport for the Thames Valley business community, with great links to London for those that are going there.”
Further details of the new rail station and the associated track developments can be seen on Chiltern Rail’s Evergreen 3 website.
See also: East West Rail
For further information:
London Oxford Airport