Covent Garden tube station
Template:Use British English Template:Infobox London station Covent Garden is a London Underground station in Covent Garden. It is on the Piccadilly line between Leicester Square and Holborn. The station is a Grade II listed building, on the corner of Long Acre and James Street. It is in Travelcard Zone 1.
The station was opened by Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway on 11 April 1907, four months after services on the rest of the line began operating on 15 December 1906.
Like the rest of the original GNP&BR stations, the street level station building and platform tiling was designed by Leslie Green. The station building is a classic red 'Oxblood' building which has two elevations fronting onto the end of James Street and Long Acre. The platform wall was tiled with two shades of yellow and white tiling which formed geometric shapes along with three blank spaces to incorporate the station name. As part of Transport for London's investment programme, the ageing tiling dating back from the station's opening was replaced in 2010 in a like-for-like basis, retaining the look and feel of the platforms.
Covent Garden station is one of the few stations in Central London for which platform access is only by lift or stairs and often becomes congested due to the Covent Garden area's popularity with tourists. To control congestion on Saturday afternoons, when the surrounding shopping areas are at their busiest, the station was previously exit only to avoid the risk of dangerous overcrowding of the platforms, but following replacement of the lifts, this restriction has been lifted. There are four lifts which give access to street level, although a final flight of stairs from the lifts to the platforms means that the station is wheelchair inaccessible. Alternatively, there is an emergency spiral staircase of 193 steps (The equivalent to a 15 storey building). During the lift journey a recorded announcement is played asking passengers to have their tickets/passes ready as they exit the lifts and advising where to turn for Covent Garden's market.
Transport for London has made a commitment to ease the congestion at the station, which may involve the creation of a new exit further north along Long Acre (i.e. away from Covent Garden Piazza and nearer the eclectic shopping area which surrounds Neal's Yard), and the provision of escalator access.Template:Citation needed
Proximity to Leicester Square
The journey between Leicester Square station and Covent Garden takes only about 20 seconds, and measures only 260 metres (0.161 miles), the shortest distance between two adjacent stations on the Underground network.<ref>Key facts | Transport for London</ref> The stations are so close that a pedestrian standing halfway between them on Long Acre can see both tube stations by turning around 180°. The proximity means that London Underground's standard £4.70 single cash fare for the journey between these two stations equates to £29.19 a mile, making the fare for this particular journey more expensive per mile than the Venice Simplon Orient Express.<ref>Orient Express: London-Paris-Venice aboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express luxury train</ref> Posters at the station give details of the alternative methods of getting to and from Covent Garden using surrounding stations.
It is said that the ghost of actor William Terriss haunts the station. The last reported sighting of William Terriss was in 1972.
- London Transport Museum Photographic Archive