Last edited 29 Oct 2018




[edit] Overview

On 31 August 2016, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan made the first station-to-station journey from Custom House to Canary Wharf on the new Elizabeth line. His visit marked a 75% complete milestone on the construction programme.

Half of the permanent track has been laid, and nearly all of the platform structures built, which will give step-free access to the 200m-long trains at all of the 10 new stations.


The mayor met a number of engineers and apprentices working on what is Europe's largest infrastructure project, currently reported to be on schedule and on budget.


Sadiq Khan said:

“The opening of the Elizabeth line will be a landmark moment for London. It will help us deliver a modern, truly world-class transport system that allows us to deal with the growth in London’s population over the coming decades.

“Being able to travel the Elizabeth line route from Custom House to Canary Wharf shows the huge progress that has been made. I visited the Canary Wharf station site as Transport Minister in 2010 when construction had just got underway. The fact that the project is now 75%, and being delivered on time and within budget is testament to the hard work of the thousands of men and women who have worked on the project.

“It is vital for the future prosperity of our city that progress continues apace and we deliver this wonderful project on time. With brand new trains and all the stations being step-free, the opening of the Elizabeth line will improve the quality of life for millions of people across London and the south east, and provide a huge boost to our economy.”



Andrew Wolstenholme, Crossrail Chief Executive said:

“The remaining 25% of the programme will present a new set of challenges as we finish installing the critical components that will transform this major infrastructure project into an operating railway. The Elizabeth line will be vital to the future success of the capital and we’re fully focused on completing the delivery safely, on time and on budget, for our handover to TfL in 2018.”

Wolstenholme stepped down as CE in early-2018.


[Images and content courtesy of Crossrail.]

[edit] Updates

[edit] July 2018

The government confirmed that an extra £590 million was being invested to ensure that Crossrail opens on schedule. The injection of funds is in addition to the previous budget of £14.8 billion. Of this, £300m is to be given directly to Crossrail, while the remaining £290m will be given to Network Rail for upgrades to the existing network.

A spokesperson for Crossrail said: “Construction is now in its final stages with a huge effort underway to complete and commission the new railway. A number of factors have meant that additional investment is needed by both Crossrail Limited and Network Rail during this final stage of the programme covering both the new build central section and upgrades to the existing railway.

“These cost increases are disappointing but additional funding is critical to the delivery of this vital project. Both Crossrail Limited and Network Rail remain focused on managing costs through to project completion.”

[edit] August 2018

On 31 August 2018, it was announced that the scheduled opening of the Crossrail line across London in December will be delayed by up to a year. The news comes after a series of problems which had fuelled speculation that delays were inevitable.

TfL said more time was required 'to ensure a safe and reliable railway for customers from day one of passenger service.' The central section of the line, from Paddington to Abbey Wood, will now not open until autumn 2019.

Andrew Adonis, the former chair of the National Infrastructure Commission, said: “It’s clearly a further massive catastrophe for [Transport Secretary] Chris Grayling, who didn’t say a word in public about the scale of the crisis." He went on to predict that the full scale of the problems had yet to emerge, and that the opening could be delayed until 2020.

London Central Portfolio’s chief executive Naomi Heaton said: "The delay will, without doubt, add to the woes of many London home owners located outside the heart of the capital. In a market where prices have not grown in real terms over the last year and transactions have fallen, sellers banking on the Crossrail 'premium' may well be disappointed. A double whammy because its 'hope value' was probably built into the price they originally paid.”

[edit] October 2018

In October 2018, the Department for Transport (DfT) provided TfL with a short-term loan of £350m to enable it to complete the delayed project. An independent review was commissioned of Crossrail's governance as well as a separate review of the project's finance and commercial position. The government confirmed that the cash injection was to 'ensure that full momentum is maintained behind Crossrail.'

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