In a move which has delighted supporters and staff Transport for London the Government and the Mayor of London have agreed to adopt a fully publicly-funded procurement system for a new fleet of trains and requisite maintenance facilities for Crossrail.
Secretary of State, Patrick McLoughlin, agreed the change proposed by the Mayor. The huge infrastructure project, which is scheduled to open in 2018, is progressing well.
Five tunnel boring machines are now at work: Phyllis and Ada in west London, Elizabeth and Victoria in east London, and Sophia in Plumstead, southeast London. Already the TBMs have created three miles of tunnels.
Says Andrew Wolstenholme, Crossrail’s Chief Executive, ‘With 26 miles of new tunnels to be built for Crossrail, we are delivering our own London marathon beneath the streets of the capital. This is a huge and complex task with work underway 24 hours a day below London’s streets but our first few miles of tunnel are now completed. These new underground images show the scale of transformation taking place beneath London and the essential new transport links being created with every metre of new tunnel built.’
From 2018 when it opens, Crossrail will increase London’s rail capacity by 10 per cent. TfL wants to make sure the new specially designed and specially built fleet is ready and fully commissioned in good time.
Says Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, ‘Crossrail is now hitting its stride with tunnels being bored and stations being built at lightning pace. Nothing must get in the way of this fabulous new railway and it is fantastic news that we can now crack on with buying the wonderful fleet of brand spanking new trains. With more than 600 carriages providing a 10 per cent increase in London’s rail capacity, Crossrail will transport not just passengers but jobs and growth across the city and beyond.’
The previous proposal to procure Crossrail rolling stock included a £350m public sector contribution. The revised arrangement will see the public sector finance increase to 100 per cent or around £1bn.