London city experiences housing shortage as the population is growing steadily by approximately 95,000 people annually while few new houses are constructed each year. Evidence show that about 50,000 extra buildings should be constructed yearly to balance the demand.
The study was conducted by WSP, an engineering company which also designed the Shard skyscraper. It was proved that over 250,000 houses could be built on top of the 1,142 km of open railways in the capital of England, solving the shortage problem for about 5 years.
The author of the study and director of WSP, Bill Price, stated that placing new constructions on top of railways is less complicated as new land does not have to be involved. “The idea was about trying to find space for housing which we really need,” he commented. Moreover, WSP suggests that living over railways will encourage people to use public transport reducing the traffic problems in London.
Mr. Price also emphasized on the fact that the company has found methods to accelerate the construction of the buildings and to mitigate the sound and vibrations issues caused by the railways.
The company has already implemented this construction procedure at a building located near Liverpool Street station. The construction now hosts Amazon's London headquarters. Moreover, the new ground of Chelsea, a football club in London, will be founded on top of District Line and the Overground Line. "It’s important to emphasize the engineering is absolutely possible and not new. We have been working on projects of this nature in New York for decades," Mr. Prince said.