Sydney-based architecture firm Architectus has been announced as the ‘local architecture partner’ for Stage 2 of the Sydney Metro Project. Architectus will work with international firm Foster + Partners for the design of six of the seven new stations to be built as part of this project stage.

The METRON design consortium – a joint venture led by Arcadis and Mott MacDonald, and including Architectus, Foster + Partners and engineering firm Robert Bird Group – will lead the engineering design for all six stations that form Stage 2 of the Sydney Metro Project. Altogether, the project will see 31 stations and 66 kilometres of new rail being built throughout the city, making it Australia’s largest public transport project in history.

All seven of the stations to be built as part of Stage 2 will be fully-accessible for those with a disability, who are travelling with prams, and children. One of the design initiatives being implemented to facilitate accessibility is level access between platforms and trains.

As part of this project stage, service frequency will also be dramatically increased along the Bankstown Line between Bankstown and Sydenham. Instead of eight trains per hour at peak times, commuters will soon be provided with 15 new metro trains every hour.

“This is a truly city-shaping project, with six new underground metro station designs set to integrate harmoniously with existing and new commercial and residential over-station developments [and] provide an engaging and seamless commuter journey,” says Mark van den Enden, principle of rail and infrastructure at Architectus.

“The complexity, coordination and precision required really makes this the pinnacle infrastructure project for an Australian transport architect and a flagship project for Architectus.”

Architectus’ approach to the design of the landmark project relies heavily on the commuter experience. As such, the research stages of the design will incorporate a number of technologies and initiatives that seek to provide a deep, preliminary insight into how the project will function. These initiatives will subsequently allow Architectus to gather feedback from a broad cross-section of well-informed customers.

“To ensure the station designs meet the evolving needs of Sydney commuters, we’re undertaking a customer-led design process to understand the total journey experience and translate commuter need into tangible design outcomes,” says van den Enden.

“This process will include immersive testing with virtual reality and 1:1 scale prototypes of station environments with the support of design team specialists including [customer-centric] design, human factors experts and behavioural psychologists.”

In short, Architectus is leaving no part of this transformational project up to chance.

Boring for the Sydney Metro Project is set to begin before the end of 2018. By 2024, it is expected that services on Sydney Metro City & Southwest will have begun.

More information on the Sydney Metro Project can be found here.