Crossrail

10.12.18

Crossrail set for further £1bn bailout and potential further delay

Ministers are expected to announce a fresh £1bn bailout for Crossrail and admit that the project might need to be delayed beyond 2019.

According to the Financial Times, officials from the DfT and TfL, who have been in emergency talks for months, held further negotiations on Sunday ahead of an “imminent public announcement.”

On its original schedule, the flagship Elizabeth Line project was due to open on Sunday by the Queen, but it has been plagued by spiralling costs, the resignation of its chairman last week, and a nine-month delay announced in August.

Sir Terry Morgan’s resignation has heightened speculation that further problems are yet to be disclosed, and the FT has now reported that people close to the project believe the latest rescue plan will involve £1bn of new funding.

Later this week, Sadiq Khan is likely to set out various cuts to projects to fill the various financial black hole left by Crossrail’s problems, and a TfL spokesperson said “work is continuing between the government, mayor and TfL on finalising a financial package.”

The FT reports that former Labour MP Nick Raynsford is also expected to be appointed as Crossrail’s deputy chairman.

One person close to the project said the new expected open date of Autumn 2019 was now “wildly optimistic” given the current problems with signals, trains and stations which are leading to “growing panic” amongst TfL executives.

Crossrail received an injection of £590m in July, and was handed a £350m government lifeline in October to prevent further delays. The additional £1bn is now needed to address TfL’s “urgent cash flow problems.”

The news will heap more pressure on TfL and Sadiq Khan, who have been heavily criticised over Crossrail’s delays and rising costs. The London mayor has also been accused of “deliberately misleading” the public and London Assembly over when he knew about the delay.

Khan denied the claims. However, before his resignation, Morgan said he was “in absolutely no doubt” that the mayor knew and Khan has now been summoned to a hearing regarding the matter.

Caroline Pidgeon, chair of the London assembly transport committee, said she was “really worried” about TfL’s budget, and forecast a swathe of cuts in this week’s revised TfL business plan.

Image credit Dominic Lipinski

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Government’s role in new passenger-centric railway ‘will have to change’, says Williams Review lead

21/03/2019Government’s role in new passenger-centric railway ‘will have to change’, says Williams Review lead

The man leading the Williams Rail Review has warned that the government’s role in the UK railways “will have to change” as the ... more >
Government promises to look ‘very carefully’ at £218m bid for second Chelmsford station

21/03/2019Government promises to look ‘very carefully’ at £218m bid for second Chelmsford station

The government will look “very carefully” at a £218m funding bid for a new railway station in Chelmsford, Theresa May has said.... more >
Carillion-bound boss appointed to lead Kier

20/03/2019Carillion-bound boss appointed to lead Kier

Kier has appointed Andrew Davies as its new chief executive, two months after the building contractor ousted Hayden Mursell on the back of debt i... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

The West Midlands 30-year strategy

19/03/2019The West Midlands 30-year strategy

Malcolm Holmes, executive director of West Midlands Rail Executive (WMRE), outlines the West Midlands Rail Investment Strategy 2018-2047. The West Midlands Rail Executive was formed three years ago to give local authorities a direct influence over the award of the region’s main rail franchise. Working with the Department for Transpo... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

26-30 Railcard: taking advantage of opportunities

19/03/201926-30 Railcard: taking advantage of opportunities

After a nine-month national trial, the rail industry launched its seventh National Railcard for 26-30-year-olds on 2 January 2019. Rail Delivery ... more >
Caledonian Sleeper: a railway icon re-imagined

19/03/2019Caledonian Sleeper: a railway icon re-imagined

The world-renowned Caledonian Sleeper, due to begin operations at the end of spring 2019, completed its first Scotland to London journey earlier ... more >
East West Rail: the next steps

19/03/2019East West Rail: the next steps

In January, five route options for the central section of East West Rail were published as part of a public consultation on the next phase of the... more >
Rail's role in transit-orientated developments

19/03/2019Rail's role in transit-orientated developments

Jonathan Bray, director at the Urban Transport Group (UTG), argues that transit-oriented developments are the future – and that rail has a ... more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Women in rail - is the industry on the right track?

12/03/2019Women in rail - is the industry on the right track?

RTM sits down with Samantha Smith, sole female member of the TransPennine Route Upgrade Alliance Leadership Team, to find out more about encourag... more >