I think it was a very poor decision to close the original Belgrade Main station - a much better location (although not in the very centre, its still much closer than the new one), beautiful architecture, excellent transport links next to the coach station, and a major tram and bus interchange - it couldn't really be more perfect in terms of location and transport links! Even though the old station was closed, it was still busier than the new one (with people going to the still existing cafe, and walking through to get to the coach station). Although it wasn't completely closed - the ticket office was still open, selling tickets! I also got to witness the platforms being demolished in front of me (the last train was in 2018, and my visit was summer 2019).
The new Belgrade 'Centar' station is in the suburbs, connected to the centre by one bus. I do actually think the new station has potential to be a good station though - it did feel better quality than I was expecting, but far from usual European standards, and the staff were friendly. But I can only presume passenger numbers have dropped a lot since the move - its really inconvenient. It was more like a ghost station - more trains than people, and no one getting on/off the only bus to the station.
So, I would also nominate this station as my least favourite non-UK station.
I'm not particularly fond of Bruxelles-Midi either - I don't find it very easy to get around, architecturally it is nothing special and just feels like its had bits added on to it, the Eurostar terminal is cramped and dark with no natural light, and you definitely need to keep your wits about you outside of the station!
Penn Station in NYC has just had an refurbishment with the opening for a new "train hall"
Got to be fair last time I went in 2019 the ATM worked and shop was open. Must be rare by the sounds of it?So far as I am aware from my contacts in Serbia, the main station was closed as part of the gentrification of the area immediately adjacent to the river, and the mafiya types purchasing riverside apartments didn't want trains clanking past day and night. The old station wasn't brilliant - it was a fair trot from the centre and facilities were fairly scanty, but it was immediately adjacent to the Lasta bus station, which DID have nice facilities, and provided a good interchange. The old station was slated to become a railway museum owned by the rail company, but the government seized the building and decided to instead build a "Museum of Medieval Serbia" would be built there instead. There was supposed to be a bidding process to construct this, but the government made a direct award without tendering to a company sympathetic to the ruling party.
The new station has to be seen to be believed. It has no station building, and until recently, also had no roof, so all the platforms were open and usually flooded with water, as no drainage arrangements had been made. As mentioned elsewhere, it has an ATM that never works and a shop that never opens (even Topcider where the Bar trains start and finish has both of these!). Access is a major issue - it's difficult to get anywhere near it by car or transport.
Prokop in all its glory
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This is the grand entrance
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I think one of the things that makes Espinho seem weird and dour is the complete lack of any advertising - just blank dark walls of the tunnel opposite the platform. I‘m not a big fan of public advertising but it does add a bit of colour and interest on places like the tube.Oh dear, that looks terrible!
It's as if they reopened Down Street Tube Station by just putting a few lights on it!
That station's before and after images also remind me of a lot of Espinho Railway Station in Portugal.
Used to be placed in a large, long avenue with palm trees adorning the line and equipped with a direct link to the narrow gauge Vouga Line.
Now it looks like a permanent work field. The narrow gauge station is far and completely neglected and the newer station only passes because it actually has a pretty decent lighting layout and above-ground building.
Agreed, it's not pleasant at all, although I've only alighted there so the lack of facilities was not too obvious (I then caught Europe's most scenic trolleybus route back to Ventimglia).
But the old course of the line must have completely cut the town off from its waterfront? I would think the wider benefits make the rebuilding of the line worthwhile, although of course that doesn't mean the station itself could not have been much better.