Prioritisation of Major Transport Projects (Supplementary) [1]

Session date: 
December 5, 2007
Question By: 
Valerie Shawcross
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
Peter Hendy (Commissioner, Transport for London)

Question

Thank you very much indeed. Yes, Peter; perhaps I did ask you to gaze into a crystal ball with that question. You rightly tapped into my main obsession here, which is making sure that there are significant developments in the commuter passenger infrastructure in south London and that these are pushed in the CSR 2010. There has been concern in the minds of the public in my area that the focus on Crossrail ' and I very strongly support Crossrail as a strategic, economic project for London ' has meant that there is anxiety that some of the schemes you mentioned there as being 'in the pipeline' ' the Cross River Tram and the extensions to Croydon Tramlink and East London line too, but I particularly cite the tram projects - may possibly be at risk financially in that there may be some danger of them not being funded. Although we are talking about bids for 2010, I think we need some clear statement of commitment and political priority for those projects. The rationale I would cite is that we clearly have very overcrowded infrastructure in south London and the Northern Line south of the river is at and beyond capacity I think, and the Cross River Tram would deal with that problem. What statement can you make of TfL's commitment to seeing through these projects?

Answer

Answer for Prioritisation of Major Transport Projects (Supplementary) [1]

Answer for Prioritisation of Major Transport Projects (Supplementary) [1]

Answered By: 
Peter Hendy (Commissioner, Transport for London)

We are certainly completely committed to moving them forward in terms of consultation. There has just been, as you know, an extensive consultation about various options for the route of the CRT. It is clearly crucial to make sure that we have dealt with a large number of issues and public concerns, and that the development of the project is the right thing to do. Clearly I cannot make a commitment to fund something for which there currently is evidently no funding, but the success of these things will depend on a robust scheme being worked up with a decent business case, wide cross-community support, a successful Transport and Works Act submission, and then making the further case to the Government. I would say two things to what you have said, one of which is that although Crossrail is primarily east-west, the relief that it will bring to the total London transport network when it is delivered in 2017 will be huge, and actually there will be consequential relief on a number of links on the Underground particularly, which will enable the Underground to absorb more capacity, though that is a long time away. The other thing I would say is that we do have in our minds the question about the wider capacity of the south London transport network. Later on there is at least one question about the National Rail network south of the river and I think that you can expect, as a consequence of the Government's HLOS (High Level Output Specification) announcement in July, a reasonable increase in the capacity of the railway network in south London in the period 2009 to 2014. That will not be the same as the CRT scheme would deliver but it certainly will be a relief to people who clearly could do with some.