HS2 Unveils Headhouse Design for Euston Tunnel

HS2 Ltd has unveiled the design for the Euston tunnel, showing it clad in Victorian-inspired brickwork.

The headhouse will provide emergency access to the tunnel between Old Oak Common and Euston station, the high-speed railway’s terminus. The headhouse will be situated beside the existing West Coast Main Line. The split-level three-storey building will be clad in the traditional bley/grey engineering brick to blend in with the area’s Victorian railway architecture.

HS2 Euston headhouse
HS2 Euston headhouse

The headhouse will be built beside an existing 10m high retaining wall. It will extend above the top of the wall and feature a green roof, stone courtyard and an entrance facing Park Village East.

To minimise the building’s visual impact, the design retains the original parapet wall. There will also be additional planting as a further visual shield.

Euston headhouse design HS2
Euston headhouse design

The headhouse will sit atop a ventilation shaft 12m in diameter. This shaft accesses the twin tunnels below, providing both emergency access and supporting ventilation.

Following engagement with Camden Council and the public, a number of substantial changes have been made to the original design, such as a greater use of brickwork and the additional street planting.

HS2 Ltd’s main works contractor, a joint venture comprising Costain, Skanska and STRABAG, drew up the plans in collaboration with design partner Design House. The joint venture will deliver two 13-mile tunnel bores, the Euston tunnel measuring 4.5 miles between Euston station and Old Oak Common, and the Northolt tunnel to West Ruislip on the outskirts of the capital.

Malcolm Codling, Project Client Director, HS2 Ltd, said:

“The headhouses will be one of the few parts of the London tunnels visible above ground before the line arrives at Euston station. That’s why it’s essential that we get the design right.

“Our design teams have made a number of significant changes as a result of community engagement and we remain committed to working with the local community as we move forward with the construction phase of the project.”

Work is currently underway to construct the tunnel portal where trains will emerge before reaching Euston station.

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