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HS2 Interchange station, automated people mover, artist's impression
HS2 Interchange station, automated people mover, artist's impression

Automated people mover

The future HS2 Interchange Station in Solihull will be a major gateway station for the region. It will be part of a new public transport interchange serving Solihull and the West Midlands, with links to the UK motorway network. 

A new automated people mover system will serve the station. The People Mover will provide connectivity between Interchange Station and Birmingham Airport, Birmingham International Railway Station and the National Exhibition Centre (NEC). 

The People Mover is being designed to provide a high quality passenger experience in line with the aspirations set out in the HS2 Design Vision. 

Working with stakeholders

HS2 has been working closely with the Urban Growth Company (UGC) in Solihull to include extra design elements which will support wider growth plans at the UK Central Hub. This includes modifying the alignment of the people mover as part of a major redevelopment at Birmingham International Station to create a new, multi-modal transport exchange. 

Aerial view of HS2 Interchange Station, artist's impression
Aerial view of HS2 Interchange Station, artist's impression

What is a People Mover?

People Movers are reliable, efficient, and environmentally friendly modes of transport. People Movers can be self-propelled, or cable pulled. The end result is the same: a high quality, fully accessible passenger experience. 

Well-known locations of People Movers in the UK include Birmingham Airport, Gatwick Airport, Stansted Airport and Heathrow Terminal 5.

Architect's vision of the new HS2 Interchange station in Solihull
Architect's vision of the new HS2 Interchange station in Solihull.

The People Mover at a glance

  • Services every three minutes 
  • Interchange to Birmingham Airport in six minutes 
  • 2.3km long route – from Interchange to Birmingham Airport 
  • Approximately 20m long vehicles 
  • Capable of carrying 2,100 passengers per hour in each direction Travel on a viaduct for entire route – 12m off the ground at its highest point
Automated people mover (APM) viaduct leading to HS2 Interchange Station
Automated people mover (APM) viaduct leading to HS2 Interchange Station

The Viaduct

After departing Interchange Station, the People Mover vehicles will travel along an elevated viaduct for the entire route. The viaduct will cross over the M42, Pendigo Lake and the West Coast Main Line railway. 

The viaduct will be made of weathering steel, which will be supported by concrete columns. Weathering steel is a popular choice of material for infrastructure such as viaducts because of its low maintenance requirements, which means less disruption in the surrounding area. 

Weathering steel initially appears as a fresh, orange-brown colour. After a few years of exposure to the elements, the colour changes to a dark brown ‘chocolate’ colour. 

Artist's impression of the completed highways network near the future HS2 Interchange Station
Artist's impression of the completed highways network near the future HS2 Interchange Station

People Mover Stops

The People Mover stops are designed to be simple and intuitive for passengers. The use of colour will provide clear wayfinding for passengers, while information screens and passenger announcements will provide live journey updates. All stops will be fully accessible.

Minimising environmental impacts

People Mover vehicles will be cleaned and maintained in a dedicated maintenance facility. This facility will be located alongside the viaduct, to the east of where the viaduct crosses the M42. 

We have moved the location of the maintenance facility since the original plans were developed. This reduces the length of the viaduct and minimises environmental impacts, while maintaining the same quality of service. 

Working with stakeholders

HS2 has been working closely with the Urban Growth Company (UGC) in Solihull to include extra design elements which will support wider growth plans at the UK Central Hub. This includes modifying the alignment of the people mover as part of a major redevelopment at Birmingham International Station to create a new, multi-modal transport exchange.