IMG 5496fi - Bond Street station - the confusion!

Bond Street station – the confusion!

I wrote about Bond Street just over a week ago. Since that post there have been some changes to how passengers are circulated around the station. And it does seem no matter how they do it, the station seems to be quite confusing!

First off, this tweet sent on the 20th from TfL is great! Despite announcing that the new completion of the upgrade, the new entrance as pictured, stays very firmly shut! That’s a case of ‘open the station doors, TfL!’

The huge paradox about Bond Street (or other upgrade works like Kings Cross) is yes these stations are now step-free, but there’s far far more steps (and walking) than ever before!

Considering the **celebrations** surrounding the lifts, well the station originally had several lifts which were taken out in 1926! Shhh! Dont mention them!

When the one lift that serves street level takes a breather or any other in the chain has a break down, the concept of being ‘step free’ goes right out of the window! As a disabled person I know how tenacious these claims are. Its always like ‘we’ve provided some super gee whizz accessibility.’ When you want it, its never available!

Crossrail’s opening in a year’s time shall mean there are alternatives – but not without hassle….

Those Crossrail stations that are directly linked to the tube will at least provide extra accessibility but it still won’t make it brilliant, it’ll just be a narrow spectrum of tube lines with the Central and Jubilee being the main beneficiaries, whilst the Bakerloo and Northern gain one point each. The biggest winners will be the sub-surface Circle/Hammersmith & City/Metropolitan lines.

The irony of the Bond Street upgrade is the greater distance passengers are now forced to walk (and as Sod’s law would have it, many more steps too!) Exiting to/from the Central Line is still basically the same means number of steps and escalators.

Initially (from the 18th November onwards) the old and new (2017) parallel corridors were signed so passengers circulated anti-clock wise which seems to be the best overall option.

Some claim the new upgrade cuts their commuting time – it all depends on which way one is going and where. TfL’s blurb claims the “new route between Jubilee & Central Line will reduce interchange times and ease congestion during peak hours.”

Its hard to see how the new arrangement saves time or walking distances. Its a bit like arriving at the station and having a toss up to see which route shall work the best 🙂

On the 26th November I noticed they were using both routes to the Jubilee. The older one was being used bi-directionally and one of the new Jubilee escalators was barricaded out of use.

IMG 5815 - Bond Street station - the confusion!
Bond Street – Going against the flow! This is how it was before the upgraded section opened.

Why is the bi-directional system not being used on the new escalator route? Well for a start its that terribly long walk and extra stairs, but the fact the new bit only offers two instead of three escalators, so its less flexible. A bit cheapo if you like!

The new escalators are basically uni-directional (because of the signage) and as evidenced on the first day of opening were being used in the opposite direction (eg the passenger flow was clockwise.)

There is nothing to stop people walking the opposite way as long as they aspire to use the fixed central staircase between the new escalators.

The other thing is the need to reverse the escalators from time to time to save on wear and tear so the direction  of flow will invariably be changed – or when operating demands dictate it.

Mention must be made of the other lift access point at the middle interchange level. The lift doesnt stop here yet. As the temporary sign says, its a link to Crossrail (er… the Elizabeth Line) so it wont be coming into use until December 2018.

IMG 5754 - Bond Street station - the confusion!

When this does come into use it will give access to the other bit of corridor (shut off at present) that ultimately goes to the Crossrail platforms.

The new and other wise ticket-less ticket hall now has a information panel detailing the history of Bond Street station. This was put up on the 25th November. It was alleged by Geoff Tech in his video of the 17th November to be a pollutant panel – or whatever….!

IMG 5802 - Bond Street station - the confusion!
The new panel depicting the history of Bond Street tube station.

Thats a nice information panel with historic details and photographs. It seems these enhanced information boards are a new feature – Tottenham Court Road station really goes over the top with this! Here they don’t even mention the fact Bond Street tube station once had lifts. Oh the irony!

geoff1 - Bond Street station - the confusion!
That’s a pollutant panel here….

geoff2 - Bond Street station - the confusion!
Let’s take a real close look…. is this really a pollutant panel….?

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