Multiple new artworks set for installation at Coventry railway station

Published Friday, 12 February 2021

Work is continuing to progress on the Coventry Station Masterplan, hitting key milestones such as the installation of the new footbridge, opening of the new taxi loop and installation of cladding on the new station building, which will serve as an extension to the existing station building to cater for passenger growth and improve facilities.

CGI of the artwork

Around £250,000 of the total £27.5 million from the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) for the Coventry Station Masterplan has been allocated to enhance the existing station building. The plans to refurbish the Grade II listed building, which has changed very little since its opening in 1962, include deep cleaning to enhance original features, treatment of flooring and replacement of the skylights on platform one, allowing more light into the building.

Councillor Jim O’Boyle, Cabinet Member for Jobs and Regeneration at Coventry City Council and Board Director at the CWLEP, said: “We’ve seen a lot of changes at the station over the past six months with the giant crane lifting in the new footbridge and the new multi-storey car park being built.

“Our plans for the city centre have been to make the best of the old and the best of the new, and these plans sum that up exactly – taking a Grade II listed building, but refurbishing it to make it feel modern and inviting. Thank you for your patience while we are cracking on. It will all be worth it in the end!”

There will also be a programme of public art installations which will enhance the existing station building and improve visitor experience. The proposals include refurbishing the “Welcome to Coventry” sign on platform 4, and a new tapestry-inspired welcome sign in the main concourse which pays tribute to Coventry’s history which is rich in the cloth and ribbon industry crafts, a vinyl mural on the main concourse glazing displaying Coventry’s icons and landmarks, plus nature-inspired artwork installed on the existing station multi-storey car park.

In addition, architectural seating with planting areas, called parklets, will be installed along the platforms, creating pleasant seating areas for passengers waiting for trains.

Councillor David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities at Coventry City Council, said: “The plans to install artwork, inside and outside the station, is really exciting. We will be carefully protecting the building’s Grade II listed status while adding something unique.

“It’s always wonderful to see new pieces of art being installed, but especially so when it can be incorporated into older buildings like this. It will help us to celebrate the station whilst conserving its iconic 1960s architecture.”

Further bids for funding have also been submitted in hopes to upgrade cycle parking and improve cycle routes to the station, as well as further public art installations and refurbishment works to restore heritage features.

As part of the improvement works to the station, Avanti West Coast is also undertaking a project to refresh the station’s branding and redecorating the waiting rooms whilst ensuring that none of the original features, which are listed, are changed. This work will include painting, new flooring, improved seating, the installation of automatic doors and where applicable, installing charging points. Additionally, Avanti are revamping the former first-class lounge on platform one to create a new space which can be used as a waiting room which will also serve as a community area during off peak hours.

John Harrison, Group Property Project Manager at First Group, which runs Avanti, said: “In addition to the waiting room improvements, we’re also committed to delivering and installing a Building Management System across the station. The system monitors what energy we are using, where we are potentially wasting energy and allows us to create more efficient ways of working, such as lights controlled by timing.

“We also have plans to install a water fountain to reduce the use of plastic bottles and renew wayfinding signage.”

For more information on the work at Coventry railway station, please visit our dedicated webpages.

Coventry City Council