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Is there a quick way to exit King's Cross tube station (Metro/Circle) onto Euston Road (heading westward)?

Unfortunately I have to make this escape during rush-hour. I'm arriving via Farringdon. The doors open on the right-hand side and wherever I am on the train I seem to have no option but climb some central steps, turn left, go through the barriers (packed), emerge into a large area, climb more steps to my left, double back and climb more steps to finally reach the fresh air of Euston Road(!). Is there anything quicker? I'm just tired of being held up at the ticket barriers and packed in like a sardine. I want to be on the west side of King's Cross, towards Euston. I have a season ticket on my Oystercard if it matters.

  • I take this route also and can visualize all of the stairs and barriers you mentioned, and I'm watching this question closely. I use a disabled Freedom Pass, so always on the look-out for less stairs to climb. Never found relief at KC, and if needs be I'll use Warren Street or Russell Square or Euston Square and trade off stairs for extra distance. – Gayot Fow Nov 17 '14 at 13:23
  • Are you coming out in the King's Cross side (round, modern-looking) or the St Pancras side (big cut-away rectangle with stairs at each end)? If you're not coming out on St Pancras side, you probably should be. This map might also help. – user568458 Nov 17 '14 at 14:30
  • Get down at Euston Square. It is the next station. And it is walkable. But I believe there are only 2-3 barriers there. – DumbCoder Nov 17 '14 at 15:37
  • @user568458 I'm coming out fairly near St Pancras. In fact I was wondering if a shortcut might be via St Pancras but didn't want to make any assumptions in the question. – TheMathemagician Nov 17 '14 at 17:25
  • @GayotFow I'm just lazy but I don't see how many billions can be spent on refurbishment and yet result in a huge bottleneck with no escalators and a switchbacking route. – TheMathemagician Nov 17 '14 at 17:27
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From the Hammersmith & City, Circle Line and Metropolitan line trains at Kings Cross St Pancras, there are three staircases leading away from the platform, going to two distinct exits.

You can see how this works on this 3D map of Kings Cross St Pancras underground station

For an exit to Euston road going westbound, your best bet is to exit via the western two staircases, which head to common ticket barrier. These barriers are only used by H&C,C,M trains, so are rarely very busy. Even with a train arriving, it only takes a few moments to exit at rush hour.

Avoid the interchange staircase, which is the far eastern one. That is a longer walk to the ticket barriers, and is shared with traffic changing to other lines, and the barriers are shared with several other lines. Consequently it's more walking, and more people when you get there

When you leave the gateline, you have two choices. One it to turn left, go past the ticket office (with often queues and lost looking tourists), up the stairs towards St Pancras station, then left to exit onto Euston Road. This is the most direct, but the busier. It may be easier, as the exit ticket barriers are on the left.

Otherwise, exit to the right, and take a right just after the ticket machines. This goes up a fairly quiet staircase, then at the top go right and right. This takes you out onto Euston Road. Almost never anyone on the staircases or exit, but you do have to cross the flow going into the underground at the ticket barrier twice.

  • gah, glad someone answered this, it was bugging me, if I was still in London I'd have headed over to try it out :) – Mark Mayo Nov 17 '14 at 23:55
  • Turning right, then right again would get me onto Euston Rd but on the easterly corner of the station rather than the westerly. So basically the answer to my question is "No". – TheMathemagician Nov 18 '14 at 11:20
  • Also your statement that "it only takes a few moments to exit at rush hour" is not true of my experience. You have hundreds of people trying to get through half a dozen turnstiles. – TheMathemagician Nov 18 '14 at 11:27
  • I go through there at rush hour about once a week, and never have to wait very long at the barriers I described. Being in the right carriage to head straight up the stairs can help though – Gagravarr Nov 18 '14 at 12:33

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