1 MAY 2017


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Article from BTNews 1 MAY 2017

Crossrail full by 2031?

Significant capacity restraints are looming on Crossrail west from Paddington and east from Liverpool Street by 2031, a decade after opening, the MetroRail Congress in London was told last week, writes Andrew Sharp.

BTN asked the presenter, Tom Burton-Page, head of funding and case-making for Crossrail 2, why the system had been built too small. 

He responded that the major increase in London population from 8m to 10m had not been foreseen when designs were being finalised, and that his projection had shown the peak situation. 

It was possible to extend the trains from nine cars to 12, and to increase frequency from 24 to 34 trains an hour, he added.

However, running 12-car trains to Heathrow would be expensive, as extending the stations there would be difficult. A train every 1.75min is technically feasible, but busy stations need to be designed to handle peak loads, with exit capacity and ventilation capacity key constraints.

Despite London mayor Sadiq Khan’s commitment to zero fare rises, London Underground managing director Mark Wild said he anticipated a 33% increase in fare revenue. 

Wild showed a chart of capacity increases from new signalling and, on the Piccadilly Line, new trains, indicating capacity on the Hammersmith and City, Circle & Piccadilly Lines would go up by 60% or more: on other lines, the increases were around 20%.



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