Latest Rail News

14.03.13

TfL seeks operator for Crossrail concession

Operators have until the end of April to submit expressions of interest to operate Crossrail services from May 2015.

They are to be let as a concession, similar to that used for London Overground.

TfL will stipulate the level of services to be provided including hours of operation and staffing levels, and the successful bidder will run the train services and many of the stations along the route, and provide customer service and operations staff.

The services on Crossrail will be phased and will initially operate on existing rail lines between Liverpool Street and Shenfield, taking over the services currently operated by Greater Anglia. The route through Canary Wharf, the City and the West End will open in late 2018, with the full route running in 2019.

Howard Smith, chief operating officer for London Rail at TfL – who is himself joining Crossrail this month – said: “Work on delivering Crossrail, a new rail service linking west to east through the heart of London, continues at a pace with tunnelling well underway and work at key stations being carried out. We are now starting the procurement process to find a truly first rate operator to run the Crossrail services and provide excellent standards of customer care on behalf of TfL.”

The notice inviting expressions of interest has been placed in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU).

Crossrail will be “fully integrated” with the TfL network and increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10%. Services to Shenfield will initially operate with the current rolling stock but will be gradually replaced in 2017 by the new Crossrail trains, the procurement of which remains “on schedule”, it says.  

It is expected that an operator will be appointed by late 2014.

The exact opening strategy for Crossrail has not yet been finalised but the assumption is:

Heathrow to Paddington (mainline platforms) – May 2018 (Crossrail concession takes over Heathrow Connect)

Paddington (Crossrail platforms) to Abbey Wood – December 2018

Paddington (Crossrail platforms) to Shenfield – May 2019

Full through service (including services to Maidenhead) – December 2019

(Image copyright Crossrail Ltd)

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