A £10 million contract to rebuild Perry Barr station has been signed ©WMRE

Construction firm Galliford Try has been awarded a £10 million ($14 million/€12 million) contract to build a new railway station in Perry Barr - which will be a key transport link at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The station will be the closest to Alexander Stadium - the focal venue of the Games which will host the Opening and Closing Ceremonies and athletics.

From this month, the existing station - which is described as "dilapidated" - will be closed for a year to allow the work to take place.

New lifts and improved access will be created alongside a new station concourse and booking office.

It is part of a wider £500 million ($704 million/€581 million) regeneration of the Perry Barr area, which is seen as a key legacy benefit of Birmingham 2022.

"We are delighted to have been awarded this contract for Perry Barr station and look forward to creating a much-needed new facility for local people," said Simon Courtney, managing director for Galliford Try Building West Midlands.

"This award follows fast on the heels of our recent success at Wolverhampton Interchange, and we will look to build on our reputation for providing high-quality station solutions to the rail sector."

Malcolm Holmes, the director of rail for Transport for West Midlands, added: "The new Perry Barr station will be a vast improvement on what was there before and will provide a much better environment for passengers, including the future residents of the thousands of homes currently under construction in the area. 

"It is vital that we have a contractor with Galliford Try's experience and track record on board for such a landmark project."

The station will be the closest to Alexander Stadium, which is being upgraded for Birmingham 2022 ©Birmingham 2022
The station will be the closest to Alexander Stadium, which is being upgraded for Birmingham 2022 ©Birmingham 2022

Birmingham City Council granted approval for the station revamp in February after a previous design was widely criticised.

An artist's impression showed a grey box design which one person said looked like "something my eight-year-old has done in Minecraft".

A new design was presented and approved but this has not been immune from criticism, with Councillor Mike Ward describing it as a "high quality garden shed".

According to the Birmingham Mail, Councillor Gareth Ward said: "Given that this is going to be a flagship station because of the Commonwealth Games, I think it's rather disappointing that we haven't gone all out on the design."

As well as rail, major improvements to the road network in Perry Barr are also due to be completed before Birmingham 2022.

The Perry Barr flyover, near to Alexander Stadium, was brought down in February 2020 and will be replaced by a dual carriageway.

It is hoped that transport links will be "future-proofed" in preparation for new homes which will be built after the Commonwealth Games.

The West Midlands Metro tram service is also being significantly upgraded.

Birmingham 2022 is due to run between July 28 and August 8 next year.