Aberdeen Station Refurbishment

M&E engineering services for the £8m redevelopment of Aberdeen train station

Morrison Construction was appointed to deliver key elements of an £8m multi-phased refurbishment programme for Aberdeen train station and selected Forte Engineering as their partner for electrical & telecoms. The project was undertaken to enhance the facilities for customers and staff at the station, which has sat in the heart of Aberdeen city centre for more than 150 years.

The works were carried out within 8 work areas across a Grade A listed building which has required the full team to work sensitively to adhere to historical and conservation needs. The station also remained open to the public and staff meaning minimizing disruption to travellers was of the upmost importance.  With some areas requiring full demolition, Forte Engineering safely isolated parts of the old station removing all redundant containment, cabling and accessories. Temporary site power & lighting was then set up for the preliminary works.

Each area was unique, so following the drawings and specifications of the design, while many locations were simultaneously under construction, was essential to the successful delivery of the project.  Forte Engineering excelled at co-ordinating the phasing of each work area, working well alongside multiple tradespeople from across the industry.


Works included

New Accommodation for Scotrail staff on Platform 2

The goal of this new area was to give the Scotrail staff modern facilities and make use of the space previously used as a workshop to store/repair the station equipment.

Several challenges were identified with discrepancies in the design during the service installation phase and in the latter stages near completion. Forte Engineering found solutions to overcome these which meant the job could be delivered with minimum time disruption to the project.  

New containment throughout the building was installed serving every area with new LED lighting, small power, comms, fire and security protection as well as disabled toilet alarms.

Scotrail now have a brand-new mess room for the staff, a purpose-built store and workshop, three offices, toilets (including disabled toilets) and locker rooms.

Renovation of the old ticket office to new LNER mess and office facilities

A full renovation was undertaken to create a new entrance to the station.  This involved stripping the old travel centre and first-class lounge area of the station back to the bare shell.  These areas were then divided up to be a new entrance to the station, a retail unit at the front of the building and new accommodation for LNER staff including offices, briefing room, locker rooms, mess room and toilets.

Forte installed new containment throughout the building that served every area with new LED lighting, small power, comms, fire and security protection. This included installing the new LED strip feature lighting at the front of the building leading to the new station entrance.

North Corner Building & External lighting

The iconic 150+ year old north corner building structure is placed at the face of the station nearest to Guild Street. Forte engineering was tasked with installing modern LED strip lighting on the decorative shelves externally and new up-lighters inside the portico. This lighting illuminates the main features of the building and makes its’ features stand out, particularly at night.

Stainless steel cable tray was installed externally on the parapet of the slated roof to match the granite blocks the building is constructed with. This containment had to be installed in a way that it was not visible from ground level as not to diminish the effect of the LED strip. Lighting control was installed and programmed within this installation to ensure the building is presented as planned at the appropriate times.

Internally, the areas were stripped back to the bare shell, and we installed new LED lighting, small power, and a fire alarm system. Preserving the look of the iconic first floor room of this area was one of Scotrail’s highest priorities which was a key focus for Forte throughout this phase of the project.

Retail units & New Section board

The front entrance and seating areas alongside the Hero bar and Pumpkin café were demolished and stripped back to allow for two new retail units with modern glass front entrances to be built.  Forte installed new LED lighting, small power and a fire alarm system in the main areas of each unit including the shared back corridor & rooms, all works undertaken to meet building and industry standards.

Forte was tasked with installing a separate new switch board feed from the existing main section board in the Station via one 4 core 185mm2 steel wire armour cable.  Three 5 core 35mm2 steel wire armour cables were also laid connecting this switch board to the new retail distribution boards in the rear of the retail units. Each cable was over 170m long and had to be laid in the tunnelling below the station under confined spaces permits, which was challenging but the team ensured this was delivered safely and effectively.

New Travel Centre – Pavilion Building

The new ticket office and first-class lounge were the two main developments within this project.  There were previously used by the train care team and Scotrail staff as a welfare unit including the station managers office.

Once isolations of the building began, Forte identified issues which challenged the build and were out with the scope of works.

Many services for the railway station were operated from this building as a conduit and termination point. This was quickly highlighted, and Forte were asked to carry out a tag and trace survey to identify exactly what each individual cable was responsible for. Once completed, a plan was agreed to move the existing comms racks and station public announcement cubicle to the back of the building, far away from the demolition works which could have easily resulted in a cable strike.

Once the new structure was in place, Forte was able to begin the new cabling installation to meet the requirements of the architect & designer. New LED perimeter lighting was installed to illuminate the concourse and lighting and power was installed throughout the building, including emergency illumination. Two new distribution boards were put in place along with the relocation of an existing board to control the heating systems.

Stephen Clement, Project Manager, Morrison Construction said, “We selected Forte Engineering because of their accreditations and experience of working in live railway stations which is crucial for a project of this kind. They understand how to deal with the relevant interfaces, they are flexible and adaptable, competitively priced and their experience and knowledge have proven to be invaluable on this project.” 

Mark McGlinchey, Project Manager, Forte Engineering said, “We were delighted to be working with Morrison Construction on this project. The nature of the work has inherent challenges, and our team worked flexibly with the wider Morrison Construction and other subcontractor teams to ensure we delivered against the design specifications and clients’ requirements .”