062/270: #ChiswickPark – The Berliner

Tucked away in a crevice between the important interchange of Acton Town and the impossibly awkward Turnham Green is a station you’ve probably forgotten existed. It’s a station I too have dismissed in the past and, as you rush through on the centre tracks at speed, Chiswick Park looks like a dull pile of unloved and uninspiring concrete. But dismiss at your peril…

Chiswick Park’s cantilevered concrete canopy (and you can’t say you didn’t enjoy that tongue twister!) is inspired by Alfred Grenander’s Krumme Lanke station in Berlin. Once this is pointed out to you the grubby concrete suddenly gives way to ruggedly efficient and simple German engineering – and the station is seen in a whole new light. Germany was still recovering from a crippling depression after World War I, and large infrastructure projects to re-energise the country had to be constructed in a cost effective manner. The simplistic no-frills nature of Krumme Lanke is a perfect example of how pre-fabricated concrete can provide cheap and quick yet highly effective results. This was obviously something Charles Holden was particularly interested in when he designed the platforms here at Chiswick Park.

Image copyright A Carter – CallingAllStations.co.uk

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