diamond geezer

 Thursday, December 24, 2015

Remember how the Northern line was being extended to Battersea? Not any more. The confirmed name of the station at the end of the line is now Battersea Power Station.

Yes, that's Battersea Power Station station.

Naming the new station after the power station may not come as much of a surprise, because the Northern line extension terminates outside. But up until this month the name of the station was definitely going to be plain and simple Battersea, and all the documentation and planning information described it as such. Now suddenly, and without fanfare, the appointed designation has changed. The latest NLE extension newsletter confirms that the station's name will instead be Battersea Power Station, and the NLE page on the TfL website concurs.

At present Battersea Power Station is a brick shell with deconstructed chimneys surrounded by an extensive development site. But come 2020 Battersea Power Station will be a luxury apartment complex and retail destination, with the old structure swallowed up within a gleaming halo of offices and flats. More specifically Battersea Power Station will be a brand name, not a building, so what TfL have just done is award station naming rights to a global investment brand.

Reasons for calling the new station Battersea
• it's the name of the local community
• it's a lot shorter than Battersea Power Station so would fit on the front of trains and destination boards more easily
• it doesn't sound stupid when you add the word station on the end
• it's not a brand name
• station names shouldn't be sold off to the highest bidder

Reasons for calling the new station Battersea Power Station
• it's the main reason people will be using the extension
• the new tube station isn't really in Battersea proper, which is about a mile to the west
• at some point during the process TfL will have got some money for this, which helps neutralise nasty government cuts and maintains investment in our transport network
• it gets the brand name on the front of 25% of Northern line trains, onto every line diagram in every Northern line train and onto every tube map
• even cleverer, because this is the end of the line, directional signs at every Northern line station will include the full brand name, as will every announcement for southbound trains
• if Emirates can sponsor the cable car terminals, why shouldn't this Malaysian consortium sponsor a tube station?
• there's a long history of naming tube stations after commercial concerns, like Elephant and Castle, Arsenal, and, erm, all the other ones
• we face a long future of naming tube stations after commercial concerns, so let's start big
• most Londoners really don't care so long as they pay less in fares and/or taxes
• geographical integrity is a very 20th century concept
• it could have been called something a lot worse

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