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Extension announced for Northern Line

The Northern Line extension to Battersea was confirmed by Chancellor George Osborne in his Autumn Statement yesterday.

The Treasury will provide a guarantee that allows the Greater London Authority (GLA) to borrow up to £1bn from the Public Works Loan Board to finance the construction between Kennington and Nine Elms.

The deal is designed to allow developers to raise smaller amounts of funding over several years and repay TfL, which means it is likely that between £600-800m for the project will be on TfL’s balance sheet for many years.

The extension could cut journey times to the City to around 15 minutes. Work is expected to begin in 2015 and services could be operational by 2020.

The development site around Battersea power station is the biggest regeneration scheme in central London and is hoped to create up to 25,000 new jobs and 16,000 new homes.

Osborne said: “We’ve already set out plans this autumn for a huge investment in rail, and [transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin] will set out in the new year plans to take High Speed 2 to the North West and West Yorkshire.

“I today confirm a £1bn loan and a guarantee to extend the Northern Line to Battersea power station and support a new development on a similar scale to the Olympic Park.”

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “After months of intensive discussions and hard work we have got the go-ahead from Government on financing an extension to the Northern Line. It will be an incredible confidence boost for developers preparing to invest there and it will also be a considerable boost for local people who will benefit from the new Tube link.”

The proposal in detail includes: Extension of the Charing Cross branch of the Northern line from Kennington to Battersea via Nine Elms; new stations at Nine Elms and Battersea; two permanent shafts at Kennington Green and Kennington Park to provide ventilation, cooling and emergency access if required; and two temporary shafts at Radcot Street and Harmsworth Street and, as an alternative, possible ‘gallery tunnels’ to enable works to stabilise the ground in preparation for the new tunnels to be built.

Transport for London’s consultation on the plans is open until December 30, 2012. Have your say here.

Discussing the benefits of the scheme, TfL says: “The extension will improve transport links and public spaces in the area and is essential to support the transformation of Nine Elms and Vauxhall, a designated regeneration area on the South Bank.

“Up to 25,000 jobs and 16,000 new homes could be created and journey times from Nine Elms or Battersea to the West End or the City will, in some cases, be less than 15 minutes.

“An independent report on the economic impact of the Northern line extension has shown it could generate substantial benefits to the area.

“The extension is supported by the Mayor of London, Wandsworth, Lambeth and Southwark councils and the key landowners in the area. Subject to funding being in place and permission from the Secretary of State for Transport, the new stations could be open by 2019.”

(Image copyright TfL)

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