Youth hostel to be completely demolished 'within days'
The building of a former hostel on Botley Road is days away from being completely demolished, contractors working on the site have said.
The effort to remove the former Youth Hostel Association (YHA) building was due to have been completed last week, but the end date has since been pushed back.
Network Rail is carrying out major work in the area to prepare for £161 million station improvements.
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The demolition of the hostel is to allow a new western entrance to the station to be created.
Station Grill, formerly Mick’s café has also been taken down.
Network Rail and Oxfordshire County Council have agreed to shut Botley Road from April 11 until October while the railway station renovation is carried out.
The road will be closed for a similar period next year.
The rail authority had initially planned to close Botley Road at the railway bridge from January 9 but they later scrapped the year long closure proposal.
The Youth Hostel Association has been aware of Network Rail's plans since 2014.
The association has had a hostel in the city since 1936 and has been in Botley Road since 2001, with a major refurbishment taking place in 2012.
The YHA building had a major role to play during the pandemic in 2020 when it was used to accommodate rough sleepers and the homeless.
A total of 94 homeless people were housed at the YHA building and at a block of flats on Cowley Road.
They were then allocated 'more settled interim housing' at the YHA and at Canterbury House on Cowley Road.