Westminster tube station
Westminster is an underground station of the London Underground in the urban district of City of Westminster. It is located in the Travelcard Zone 1 under the Parliament Square. In the vicinity there are numerous attractions, including the Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey, St. Margaret 's Church, Whitehall, Downing Street and the London Eye. In 2011, 20.78 million passengers used the station.
The station consists of two different parts. A few meters below the surface are the platforms of the Circle Line and the District Line. At a depth of 32 meters there are the platforms of the Jubilee Line. Westminster is thus one of the deepest stations in the entire metro network.
On 24 December 1868, the Metropolitan District Railway (predecessor company of the District Line ) opened a station, the first Westminster Bridge was called. She was until May 30, 1870 terminus, as the extension to Mansion House went into operation. In 1907 the name was changed in Westminster. In the 1920s, on the Victoria Embankment was a new, designed by Charles Holden side entrance building.
The extension of the Jubilee Line in the Docklands and Stratford meant that the station under running operation had to be completely rebuilt. The new platforms were opened on 22 December 1999, since 20 November 1999, however, the trains navigated the section between Green Park and Waterloo.
While the new building is a large, 39 meter deep cavity was dug under the platforms of the Circle Line and the District Line to it down to install the escalators, lifts and stairs to the platforms on the Jubilee Line. It was the deepest shaft in the center of London, had ever been dug. One of the biggest problems that had to solve the engineers there, so around the upper platforms to build the new building that the ongoing operation of trains was not affected was. The tracks had to be reduced by 30 centimeters. This was done millimeter by millimeter in numerous steps during the short night breaks in operation. From the old, more than 130 -year-old station nothing remained.
The architect Michael Hopkins won in 2001 with his design for this cavernous station complex the prestigious Stirling Prize, which is awarded annually by the Royal Institute of British Architects of the most outstanding buildings. The interior of the station is very strict; gigantic concrete columns intersect with escalators and intermediate floors made of stainless steel. This creates the feeling of being in a huge spaceship. The station complex also serves as the foundation of Portcullis House, where the offices of most MPs are.
As in the other opened in 1999 tunnel stations of the Jubilee Line extension are also the platforms at Westminster separated by a glass wall from the tracks. The attached at regular intervals in the wall platform doors open synchronously to the doors of the cars. In addition to improving the air circulation thereby also improve the safety of passengers is to be achieved. Because of the limited space, the platforms of the Jubilee Line are arranged one above the other.