Home Rail News £350m loan agreed for Crossrail cost overrun

£350m loan agreed for Crossrail cost overrun

The Department for Transport (DfT) has signed off a £350 million loan to help cover the rising cost of Crossrail.

A statement from Rail Minister Jo Johnson published on the DfT website said that, while discussions were ongoing with Transport for London (TfL), the capital would have to bear the additional cost caused by the delayed opening.

Crossrail announced at the end of August that it wouldn’t be finished in time to meet its planned December opening, blaming delays with testing and unfinished stations. The central section between Paddington and Abbey Wood will be open by autumn 2019, according to the revised timetable.

The £350 million ‘short-term repayable financing’ is described as an interim measure to “ensure that full momentum is maintained behind Crossrail”.

Johnson confirmed that TfL and the DfT have commissioned an independent review of Crossrail’s governance and a separate review of Crossrail’s finance and commercial position.

Despite the delay, Johnson was still optimistic about the wider social and economic benefits of the £15 billion scheme.

“This project is already delivering benefits for the whole of the UK through its cross-country supply chain and its UK-built train fleet.

“When open, Crossrail will be transformative and carry up to 200 million passengers a year, delivering £42 billion of investment into the UK economy.”

Caroline Pidgeon MBE AM, chair of the London Assembly Transport Committee, felt the announcement, although welcome, was “only a sticking plaster to keep the project going”.

She added: “Londoners need to know what work is left to open the line, how much this will cost and ultimately who will pick up the tab.

“This is a joint project with government and all partners need to pay their fair share.”


Read more: Improvement work begins at TPE depot


 

Recommended

RailStaff December: Railway royalty

https://issuu.com/railmedia/docs/railstaff-december-19

Driver retires after 51 years in the cab

A 69-year-old man who is believed to be one of Britain’s longest-serving train drivers was given a special send-off by colleagues at...

West Coast appointments

Phil Whittingham remains as the managing director for services on what was formerly known as the InterCity West Coast franchise as he...

Christmas work

An army of 20,000 workers will be tasked with delivering 386 rail improvement projects over the Christmas period. Although...

Meet the rail industry heroes of 2019

The room falls silent. Bums occupy the edges of seats while the audience’s gaze locks onto the presenter’s lips as he prises...