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2003-07-14 DfT-002
Department for Transport


Darling sets out the way forward on Crossrail

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Department for Transport

Darling sets out the way forward on Crossrail

14 Jul 2003 00:00
source Department for Transport
type Press release

Alistair Darling made clear the Government's commitment to Crossrail today by mapping out the way forward for the rail link.

In a statement to Parliament, he emphasised the Government's support for Crossrail. He:
- announced that he will assemble an expert Government team to ensure the current proposals are deliverable,
- asked Cross London Rail Links to consult on the route this Autumn - made it clear it would be necessary for London businesses to play their part in funding the project
- offered Government support for a Bill to take Crossrail forward if it could be proved the rail link was deliverable and viable.

Alistair Darling said:

"There is a clear transport case for Crossrail and we remain committed to the scheme.

"In order to give the project the best chance of success I am assembling an expert team to assess the proposals to ensure they offer good value to London and are deliverable.

"We need to be sure that we have a robust plan for delivering and funding the project, with effective mechanisms to ensure those who benefit from it contribute as fully as possible to meeting the costs.

"Meanwhile I will be asking CLRL to develop their funding and route proposals in more detail. I have also asked CLRL to undertake a public consultation exercise in the Autumn to explain details of the scheme and route.

"In the light of the Departments review and CLRL's further work we will be in a position to take sound decisions on the way forward."

Notes for Editors:
1. A copy of the Secretary of State's written statement to Parliament is available on the DfT's website.

2. Cross London Rail Links (CLRL) submitted its business case for Crossrail to the Secretary of State on Friday 11 July. CLRL recommend adoption of its benchmark scheme, involving a central East-West tunnel across London, with services extending to two branches to the East and two to the West.

3. The central tunnel would follow closely the currently protected alignment from west of Paddington to east of Liverpool Street.

4. The eastern branches would both serve the Thames Gateway - one going to Stratford and then on to Shenfield, the other going through the Isle of Dogs and the Royal Docks before crossing the Thames to Abbey Wood and Ebbsfleet.

5. One of the western branches would serve Richmond and Kingston (via the North London Line), and the other would go to Heathrow via Ealing and Hayes (along the existing branch served by the Heathrow Express and subject to agreement with BAA, which owns the rights to the branch).

6. CLRL's business case suggests the benefits of Crossrail would justify the financial and environmental costs. For those impacts which can be expressed in monetary terms CLRL have calculated a benefit to cost ratio of 1.99:1, although this is dependent on certain assumptions and subject to the uncertainties to be expected with a long term forecasting exercise.

7. CLRL advise that the benchmark scheme would cost some £10 billion in 2002 prices, including contingencies.

8. There will need to be a substantial contribution to costs from those who benefit from it. The Department for Transport and Treasury will examining options and will consult the various London interests in autumn on the issue.

Public Enquiries: 020 7944 8300
Department for Transport Website:

Railhub Archive ::: 2003-07-14 DfT-002


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