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MR 1867 St. Pancras Station
St. PANCRAS STATION, MIDLAND RAILWAY EXTENSION (1867)
We propose to give a description of the works now in course of execution for this railway, commencing at about two miles from the London terminus, and following the course of the line until we arrive at the St. Pancras station, where the line terminates. The railway is constructed for four lines of way for a considerably further distance than we have named, and at the point from which we started it emerges from under the Hampstead Junction Railway, which line is carried by a heavy brick viaduct of two arches. On the east side of the line, near the bridge, are large engine sheds, fitting shops, blacksmiths shops, and other buildings necessary for the repair and fitting-up of locomotives. The line then passes under the Kentish Town-road, through a double-arched bridge, the crown of which was roofed in with cast iron plates, so that the requisite headway might be obtained without disturbing the levels of the road. The site of the Kentish Town station is in this arched bridge, and handsome and well put together retaining walls are built on either side the line through the cutting. The line then passes under Hammond-street, Islip-street, Caversham-road, and Gaisford-street, through brick arches of a similar character to one another.
We then arrive at the site of the Camden-road station, the building of which is situate on the top of the covered way near the Camden-road. The arch of this covered way is elliptical and built of five-ring work. At the south end of this covered way the lines commence to widen out, and at the junction of Paul’s-road, St. Augustin's-road, and Murray street, which are carried by a wide bridge of wrought-iron girders, with brick arches between them, the several lines begin to assume their distinctive character.
The main lines go direct to the terminus, while the Pancras branch leaves the main line on the east side, and the several other lines which will serve the existing goods station diverge to the west; all these lines are carried under the North London Railway near Camden Town station, by bridges of various construction, those for the main lines being composed of wrought iron girders and planking, and that for the St. Pancras branch by a brick arch or tunnel.
We propose to follow the course of the main line to the terminus first and then give a description of the Pancras branch, or that portion of the line which will connect the Metropolitan line with the great system of the Midland Railway. After passing under the North London Railway the main line runs alongside the existing goods station and crosses over the Regent's Canal and Cambridge-street, by wrought iron girders and platforms, and then arrives at the Old St. Pancras burial ground; here the bridge which carries the railway is in three spans, and is supported on brick abutments and piers formed of cast-iron cylinders built in segments and bolted together; these cylinders are well sunk in the blue clay, and are filled in with concrete and brickwork. After the brickwork has been allowed to set, each pier is tested with loads varying from 200 to 300 tons, and, after the load is removed, large stones of Bramley Fall are fitted to the cylinders, and the superstructure is then proceeded with.
After passing over the burial ground the line is carried in brick arches of 25ft. span until it intersects the Old St. Pancras-road, where it joins Brewer-street, Wharf-road, and Elstree-street. The arching will carry the sheds necessary for railway carriages and other requirements which are requisite at a large terminus, for the making up of trains, such as turntables, shunting sidings, etc. These arches will no doubt prove valuable property, being available for storage of goods, etc., and, having a good frontage in the Old St. Pancras-road will probably be made use of by the public. At the extremity of this arching the line is carried over the Old St. Pancras-road by wrought iron bridges varying in span and widening out to suit the position of the lines going into the terminus.
We now come to the St, Pancras terminus. The new Midland terminus and hotel will be one of the largest of the metropolitan stations, the total extent of the site being about ten acres. The frontage will be in the Euston-road, not far from the present King’s Cross station of the Great Northern Railway; the east side of the station borders on the Old St. Pancras-road; and the west in Brewer-street, which is diverted; the hotel building will occupy the corner between Skinner-street and the Euston-road. Seven streets have been diverted, and their intermediate houses, including St, Luke’s Church, have been taken down for the new works.
At the entrance of the terminus the rail level is 17½ ft. above that of the road and the adjoining streets. At the frontage the height is 12ft. above the Euston-road. The opportunity thus opened was taken advantage of, and the space afforded by these levels was turned to good account in the following manner: -In consequence of arrangements already made, a cellarage for beer was designed, the height of which, from ground level to top of columns is 13ft 6in., as will be seen by the longitudinal section. There are besides this cellarage, which occupies about four acres, seven acres more at the goods' stations, devoted to the same purpose. In order to economise the space in the cellarage under the terminus, cast iron columns about 12in. diameter have been used instead of brick piers. These columns are put upon brick piers capped with stone. The columns are in rectangular lines 14ft, 8in. centres, the spaces between the columns being convenient for the stacking of barrels.
There are in all about 700 columns ranged in the manner described, and the large space over which these columns extend is about 700ft, by 240ft. On the top of these columns are placed wrought iron girders about 2ft. deep, the main girders running across the building and having cross-girders between them, the flooring being made of Mallet's buckled plates, which connect all the main and cross-girders together. The main and cross-girders take their bearing upon the columns, and are consequently all of a uniform span, thus rendering the manufacture of so large a quantity of similar work, simple and easy to contractors.
It was at once seen by the engineer that these girders would form a most excellent tie to a large arched roof, and accordingly a roof was designed which, when finished, will be the largest single span in the world.
Those most nearly approaching to it, though of different construction, are the roofs of the Riding School at Moscow, and that of the Birmingham station roof. The tie in this roof being completely hid there will be no tie-rods, ring posts, or other fittings, which detract considerably from the appearance of a structure of this kind, as will be seen on page 494. The clear spun will be 240ft., springing from platform level, and the rib will be a four-centred arch, gothic in character. The height from platform level is 90ft., and the total length of roof 690ft. The principal ribs of which we shall give full detail engraving, in our next impression, are composed of plate flanges, with diagonal lattice bars connecting them, the total depth of each main rib being 6ft., and are placed at a distance of 29ft. 4in. apart, centre to centre. The ends of these ribs are connected to the transverse girders, as before stated. It should be noticed that provision has been made in the transverse girders not only to take the thrust of the roof, but strength enough has been given to them to carry the weight of the platform, rolling load, and ballast...