Search

Crossrail to miss its launch date by nine months as ‘extensive testing’ is still required on London’s new east to west railway

PUBLISHED: 10:25 31 August 2018 | UPDATED: 11:07 31 August 2018

The Elizabeth Line train at the Crossrail depot between Ilford and Seven Kings. Picture: TfL

The Elizabeth Line train at the Crossrail depot between Ilford and Seven Kings. Picture: TfL

TfL

Crossrail, London’s new east to west train service, will miss its December 2018 opening date target, it has been announced today (Friday, August 31).

The line, which when finished will be known as the Elizabeth line and will run from Reading and Heathrow in the west and Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east, is made up of 42km of tunnels running underneath the capital and has been under construction since May 2009.

A spokesman for the project has now revealed that the line will not be fully operational until autumn 2019, with the central section between Paddington and Abbey Wood still needing additional work.

More time is needed to complete “final infrastructure and extensive testing” to ensure a “safe and reliable railway” is delivered, according to Crossrail Limited.

Rail minister Jo Johnson announced last month that the scheme’s budget has been increased from £14.8 billion to £15.4 billion due to “cost pressures”.

Crossrail Limited described the 10-year project as “hugely complex”, stating that the original timetable for testing has been reduced by contractors needing more time to complete work in the central tunnels and develop software.

The firm insisted that “the focus remains” on opening the full east-west line “as soon after the central tunnels open as possible”.

Simon Wright, Crossrail Limited chief executive, said: “The Elizabeth line is one of the most complex and challenging infrastructure projects ever undertaken in the UK and is now in its final stages.

“We have made huge progress with the delivery of this incredible project but we need further time to complete the testing of the new railway.

“We are working around the clock with our supply chain and Transport for London to complete and commission the Elizabeth line.”

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan admitted the delay was disappointing, but stressed that it could not be helped.

He said: ““This has been a 10-year construction project and is one of the most complex engineering schemes ever undertaken. It is essential that a safe and reliable railway operates from day one, and this has to be the top priority.”

There are now 15 Elizabeth line trains which are already operating on the TfL Rail line from Liverpool Street to Shenfield.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Bexley Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Bexley Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Bexley Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Bexley news

Monday, September 24, 2018

Bexleyheath based big cat keeper and author, Martin Hill, has released another picture book about the relationship between three young big cats.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Kent travel to Birmingham for their Specsavers County Championship Division Two title showdown with Warwickshire starting on Monday.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

We talk to hundreds of local business owners every day; we hear their concerns, understand their challenges and share in their successes.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Kent’s Joe Denly and Rory Burns of Surrey earned earned their first Test call-ups for England’s forthcoming tour of Sri Lanka on Friday, but national selector Ed Smith insists there is no pressure to become “the new Alastair Cook”.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

The 80-year-old, who has scored more than 300 games, earned praise from England cricketer Stuart Broad

Thursday, September 20, 2018

County Championship Division Two: Glamorgan (186 & 78) lost by an innings and 172 runs to Kent (436)

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Kent centurion Zak Crawley admitted it felt good to finally score his maiden century for the county on Wednesday.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

At the age of 15, notorious Bexley criminal Kenneth Noye left Bexleyheath School in 1962.

Most read news

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Bexley Times e-edition today
E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Bexley Times twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Show Job Lists

Family Notices 24