Normally, platforms 2 and 3 serve Portsmouth & Southsea and Portsmouth Harbour, with platform 1 serving all other destinations. Platforms 2 and 3 are also signalled to allow northbound passenger departures.
The Portsmouth Area Resignalling project was instigated in late 2006, aiming to improve the flexibility of the track layout in the Fratton area. Platform 1 became the Up Main, Platform 3 became the Down Main with Platform 2 as a bidirectional through platform (although the main function of platform 2 is down line trains). Prior to the project, trains could not reverse south to north at Fratton in service.
The work, scheduled by Network Rail to take place between 23 December 2006 and 4 February 2007, was subject to a massive overrun. The works were first extended six weeks into mid-March 2007 but in late February it became obvious that there were major problems with the new equipment being installed by the contractor Siemens AG.
Until 1 April 2007 there were only three trains per hour between Fratton and Portsmouth Harbour with the remaining services terminating at Fratton and passengers using a replacement bus service. After 2 April 2007 there were five trains per hour running between Fratton and Portsmouth - three South West Trains services, one Southern service and one First Great Western service with some services still terminating at Fratton with passengers forced to change to continue their journey. The "six-week project" was eventually completed in October 2007 - some ten months after it started.
A new footbridge is now operational, linking the island platform (platforms 2 and 3) with the Up Main platform (1). This has stairs and lifts to allow disabled users full access to all trains, with lifts designed for easy wheelchair use.