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28 February 2013, 12:21
People will need up to an extra 15 minutes to catch trains from Reading station as the multi-million pound upgrade continues.
The section of the passenger bridge which links the station to the multi-storey car park will close for good on Friday March 1st as the newly refurbished subway opens on the same day.
This section of the current passenger bridge will close permanently, to allow new platforms underneath it to be completed.
For four weeks people will be able to use a temporary walking route via the new subway. Those using the temporary route should allow up to an additional 15 minutes to get to their trains.
The subway, which will be maintained by Reading Borough Council, has a new lighting and digital CCTV system linked to the station and police.
When the new northern entrance and passenger bridge is opened in April 2013, the subway will be the only means for those without train tickets to get from one side of the railway to the other.
Graham Denny, project manager at Network Rail, said: "From 1st March, the bridge linking the multi-storey carpark to the station will close for good. For four weeks, people will be able to use a temporary walking route via the new subway.
"We have to do this because the current bridge sits in the way of new platforms which have to be finished by April, so it has to be removed. We realise this will be an inconvenience to passengers and are sorry for this; if there was another way of completing the new platforms we would do it."
There will also be 10 days of alterations to train services over the Easter period (from 29th March to 7th April) to allow essential work to be done to open the spectacular new passenger bridge, new platforms and entrances.
The first phase of the station will open in early April 2013 – with the whole project remaining on course to be finished in 2015, one year ahead of schedule.
The station upgrades are just one part of the Reading improvement scheme, which also includes the construction of a new train care depot, a viaduct to provide more room for trains, new signalling to improve reliability and the introduction of overhead line equipment to allow new state-of-the-art electric trains to run.