Old Oak Common depot, Crossrail

The £15bn Crossrail project will connect Heathrow Airport to Essex via 26 miles of new tunnels directly under the city to ease pressure on London's underground system and cope with the city's projected population growth. As part of this, the trains for the new ‘Elizabeth line’ service (built by Bombardier Transportation) required a new maintenance depot for overnight stabling and periodic maintenance.


RPS provided architecture, structural engineering, the CDM co-ordinator role and subsequently principal designer services for the construction of the Old Oak Common train maintenance depot. The depot is the main maintenance hub for the servicing of the 70 new trains and will provide 9 ‘roads’ within the maintenance building, supported by a further 33 stabling roads. 

The depot houses light and heavy maintenance roads, a wheel lathe, twin equipment drop pits, synchronised train jacking facilities, underframe cleaning facility, workshop and stores, driver/train crew accommodation and a driver training suite.

Key details

Project name
Old Oak Common depot, Crossrail

Taylor Woodrow for Bombardier Transportation and MTR Crossrail

West London

Services provided

  • Architecture
  • Structural engineering
  • CDM coordinator
  • Principal designer


The Old Oak Common depot was a large construction project with many complex facets and boundary issues that had to be resolved during the scheme.

Ensuring the efficient operation of the facility was a priority. The design needed to comply with detailed Employer’s Requirements defined by Bombardier, and with all relevant RSSB, Network Rail and British Standards.

One challenge was to understand the interaction of the scheme to its neighbours and to understand the interaction between the many parts to the project.

Structure under construction at Old Oak Common rail depot.



Our structural engineers worked closely with our in-house architects and external substructure and building services designers to arrive at a fully coordinated solution. A detailed Building Information Model was developed and integrated with structural analysis software before federation with design models from other disciplines.

Structural engineering design delivery was closely aligned with Taylor Woodrow’s procurement and construction programme and preferred construction sequence/methodology.

A number of sustainable solutions have been integrated into the design including:

  • Thermal, solar and photo voltaic panels;
  • A CHP Plant
  • A thermal piles system to provide heating in winter and summer cooling.

CDM/principal designer

We addressed the complex interactions by breaking down the project into manageable activities and concentrating on the health and safety issues for each. There was also a significant emphasis placed on understanding the human factors impact of the proposals, which concluded with a scheme that was understood in detail by Bombardier Transportation when they started operating the facility.

Support provided:

  • Providing CDM consultancy through the project
  • Understanding the design risk management process and contributing to it
  • Understanding the design risks and taking an active part in their management
  • Engaging with sub-contractors for design development
  • Understanding the health and safety risks from temporary works
  • Involvement in the development of hand over documents

Project statistics

train servicing capacity
'roads' in the maintenance building
further 'stabling roads' for engines

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