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05.02.13

Crossrail 2 campaign gathers pace

The campaign for Crossrail 2, also known as the Chelsea-Hackney line, is due to get a boost today from business group London First and former transport secretary Lord Adonis, who has produced a new report and suggested route.

It is due to be launched later today, and London First said it had been working with Network Rail and TfL on the proposals.

The RMT union is also backing the plans, along with the Bakerloo line extension, although its general secretary Bob Crow has said since the projects will “make a massive difference for millions of people”, that “it is equally important that big business isn’t allowed to call the shots on the routes and the timescales for these infrastructure developments, they should be built and operated in the interests of all Londoners not just the wealthy elite.”

Baroness Jo Valentine, chief executive of London First, said recently: “London already has the most congested rail and underground network in the UK, so it is important Government also commits sufficient resources to ensure that we can deal with the extra passengers. We need expansion of the London terminus at Euston Station. And HS2 must also be integrated properly with current major transport development such as HS1 and Crossrail, and planned ones such as Crossrail 2.”

The Chelsea-Hackney line has a safeguarded route, and has risen up the priority list since the route and Euston terminus of HS2 has been confirmed.

Crossrail 2 appears in Network Rail’s RUS for London and the South East, since it “would improve connectivity on a south west to north east axis and alleviate London Underground congestion, consistent with the Mayor’s Transport Strategy.”

It goes on: “The RUS notes that a number of potential modifications to the proposed route appear appropriate, given other developments:

  • Firstly, the alignment has potential to provide significant additional dispersal capacity for the passengers from the High Speed Rail network at London Euston. This would alleviate crowding in Euston Underground station and on the London Underground Victoria Line, so further consideration is recommended by this RUS
  • Beyond this the RUS also considers that Crossrail line 2 may have potential to fully resolve the SWML peak capacity gap. This is potentially significant for the longer term, given that the alternative approach described in Option F5 has not been confirmed as economically viable at this stage
  • The resolution of the SWML peak capacity gap appears to require an alignment via Clapham Junction, an area which is a significant driver of demand in its own right. This approach is considered by the RUS to have more potential as a means of jointly alleviating London Underground and National Rail capacity issues than the currently safeguarded alignment via the Southfields route to Wimbledon, so further development is recommended
  • Finally the RUS notes that the West Anglia corridor may provide an eventual destination for trains using such a cross-London tunnel. This route would provide a ready-made destination corridor for services through the tunnel, which would relieve the constraints of London terminal capacity. Possible long-term four tracking of the West Anglia route, as considered under Option C4 should be considered in this context.

“The RUS recommends further development of Crossrail line 2 for the longer term, to alleviate both London Underground and main line congestion on trains, provide new journey opportunities and reduce journey times.”

Check back at www.railtechnologymagazine.com for updates on the new Crossrail 2 proposals when they are released later.

(Image of earlier suggested Crossrail 2 route taken from Network Rail’s RUS via www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201012/cmselect/cmtran/1185/1185vw13.htm)

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