Short term relief of overcrowding on the Barking - Gospel Oak Line (1)

Meeting: 
MQT on 2015-07-15
Session date: 
July 15, 2015
Reference: 
2015/2025
Question By: 
Caroline Pidgeon
Organisation: 
Liberal Democrats
Asked Of: 
The Mayor
Category: 

Question

The only way to reduce severe overcrowding on the TfL Barking - Gospel Oak service in the short term is to run more, or lengthened services with additional diesel rolling stock. I understand a limited number of Diesel Multiple Units (DMUs) could be sourced from several Train Operating Companies (TOCs).

Will you instruct TfL to actively search out additional DMU resources to allow Barking - Gospel Oak services to be operated with 3/4-car DMUs and agree with Network Rail to bring forward the platform lengthening element of the electrification scheme?

Answer

Answer for Short term relief of overcrowding on the Barking - Gospel Oak Line (1)

Answer for Short term relief of overcrowding on the Barking - Gospel Oak Line (1)

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I recognise the importance of adding more capacity to this route, which is why I am delighted that TfL recently signed a contract with Bombardier Transportation to provide new and longer electric trains, to be introduced from 2018. This will almost double capacity on the line.

With regard to introducing longer Diesel Multiple Units (DMUs) in the interim period, DMUs are currently in very short supply in the UK and – in the unlikely event that they could be sourced – they would be too long for the current platforms.

Platform lengthening work is planned as part of the electrification programme, to avoid duplication of closures on the line. Bringing the work forward would cost more and increase disruption for passengers and line-side neighbours as much of this work would need to be carried out at weekends and overnight. Given the short length of time that this would benefit customers between the completion of platform extension works and the electrification of the line, I do not believe that this would be a good use of public funds.