Work is well underway in meeting the commitment made by London mayor Boris Johnson to have five-car trains running on London Overground by the end of 2014.
A significant part of this work involves the construction on new stabling sidings at Silwood to accommodate the longer trains, as the nearby New Cross Gate depot is not large enough to be able to cope with all the lengthened units.
The Silwood sidings will be able to hold 10 five-car trains once complete.
The Silwood site, which should see its first train arrive on March 30, is bordered by the Highbury and Islington to New Cross Gate, Chrystal Palace and West Croydon line, the line between Surrey Quays and Clapham Junction and the Charring Cross to Dover lines.
Construction of the first of the additional carriages at Bombardier’s Derby plant is due to start in February, with the first two class 378s making their way to Derby for reconfiguration and type testing during the summer. It is expected that work on the remaining 55 class 378s will take place at New Cross Gate, with it taking around 12 months to complete the whole fleet.
Passive provision is in place for the operation of six-car sets should it become neccessary in the future.
Report by Jonathan Webb