The government and Transport for London (TfL) have confirmed a ‘financing package’ for the Crossrail project as it faces another delay beyond the autumn 2019 opening.
Today’s announcement from London mayor Sadiq Khan, TfL and the Greater London Authority (GLA) included the news that Crossrail Ltd would receive a further £1.4 billion to assist the company in filling a gap it estimates to be between £1.6 billion and £2 billion.
A new completion date has not been announced, with TfL saying “it has now become clear that more work is required than had been envisaged to complete the infrastructure and then commence the extensive testing necessary to ensure the railway opens safely and reliably”.
Crossrail, which will be known as the Elizabeth Line when it opens to the public, was originally scheduled to open this month. In August, the company announced the project would be delayed until late 2019 to allow for the completion of infrastructure and a testing phase.
In addition, the major project – one of Europe’s largest – was given nearly £600 million of government funding on top of its £14.8 billion budget by former rail minister Jo Johnson, as well as the offer of another £350 million in October.
To meet the deficit, the GLA is borrowing £1.3 billion from the Department for Transport (DfT) and will also provide a £100 million ‘cash contribution’.
Meanwhile, TfL has agreed a contingency plan with the government that will see the Department for Transport: The UK government department responsible for the English transport network, as well as transport matters in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland that are not devolved. loan a further £750 million to the project should the higher end of the new estimated cost be needed. This will replace the £350 million loan offered in October.
The news comes just days after former Crossrail and Department for Transport: The UK government department responsible for the English transport network, as well as transport matters in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland that are not devolved. brought in a new leadership team.
“With London’s population continuing to grow, our priority must be getting this monumental project completed as soon as possible, with Londoners enjoying all the benefits the Elizabeth Line will provide. This agreement means that, working with TfL and the government, Crossrail’s new leadership can get the job done.”
According to the BBC, TfL estimates it will miss out on £20 million in revenue as a result of the delay.