Monument is a principal station on the underground section of the Tyne and Wear Metro system and is used by almost 6 million passengers per year. It is named after Grey’s Monument, which stands directly above the station. It is the only station on the Tyne and Wear Metro that is situated at a line crossing.
The station opened with services from two of its four platforms (1 and 2) on 15 November 1981, when the Metro was extended south from its temporary terminus at Haymarket to Heworth. The remaining two platforms (3 and 4) came into use when services between St James and Tynemouth commenced on 14 November 1982. Platforms 1 and 2 lie below 3 and 4, at right angles.
It is only one of three stations in the world where the same metro line passes through it twice in a pretzel configuration (the others being Commercial–Broadway Station on the Vancouver SkyTrain and Voorweg RandstadRail station on the Randstadrail in The Hague, Netherlands.). Trains on the Yellow line from South Shields travel north through the station towards Jesmond, Four Lane Ends and the Coast, and return westwards via Wallsend and Manors towards St James. (A similar situation also existed briefly on the Toronto subway.)
The ticket hall has an exit to Fenwick department store, a more indirect underground connection to Eldon Square Shopping Centre, and exits to Blackett Street and Grey Street.
Although trains departing platform 3 state South Shields as their eventual destination, they must first complete an anticlockwise circuit of the coast. The journey time to stations south of Monument is considerably shorter when departing from platform 1.