Neasden Train Depot is the largest of its kind in London, with a history in manufacturing and maintaining train stock dating back to the 1800s. Over time, the rail industry has evolved to keep up with technological advances and has experienced increases in demand, resulting in this large and complex depot undergoing a much needed upgrade. With two phases split across a number of major contracts, the renovation works included civil and M&E works, DC traction power and signal works. As with all onsite engineering works at Neasden, work on the lighting and mast solution had to be undertaken with the site still fully operational.
Abacus GL520 masts were originally installed at Neasden depot in the 1980s. With safety being a critical factor for London Underground (LUL) and the masts reaching end of design life, an independent company was tasked with testing the bolts below ground. Due to the masts positioning being in close proximity to the lines, vibration from nearby trains had resulted in bolts cracking and stressing below ground, necessitating the replacement all masts onsite.
When replacing these masts, Abacus chose to relocate the new masts in order to minimise track possessions for future maintenance, as well as reducing the probability of damage due to track proximity. The original GL520 masts were removed and 29 replacement 30m GL520 masts were installed at these new points around the site. The reliability of these durable, rail approved Raise and Lower base-hinged masts, resulted in their continued use at Neasden.
A total of 165 Abacus Trent floodlights were mounted on top of the masts. These IP66 rated large area floodlights have 50 degree high grade performance reflectors designed to give a highly efficient light output, ensuring that the area is lit without any loss of light. This proved ideal for Neasden where safety and visibility is key. To help ensure the fitting performs throughout its design life, the die cast aluminium body protects the internal features from the environment and elements, whilst the tempered glass with thermal shock protects the lamp and reflector from possible damage.
To fit in with planned positions and track closures, most of the work was carried out on weekends and evenings. This helped to avoid any further downtime to operations as both line possession and the use of large cranes for lifting items over lines were required. Due to the site continuing to operate as normal during the installation, Abacus teams were required to have full LUL protection staff to chaperone the teams on site at all times.
This busy train maintenance depot can now continue to operate with the new future proof mast locations reducing potential issues below ground, with maintenance of the lighting scheme being quick, simple and easy, keeping downtime to a minimum.