Brighton Main Line 2

Meeting: 
MQT on 2015-11-18
Session date: 
November 18, 2015
Reference: 
2015/3750
Question By: 
Steve O'Connell
Organisation: 
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor
Category: 

Question

Following on from the Chancellor's commitment to a feasibility study into the Brighton Main Line 2 proposals, can the Mayor give assurances that TfL will be feeding into this work, and will undertake to properly asses what impact the current plans would have on both issues of capacity, and the existing Croydon Tramlink?

Answer

Answer for Brighton Main Line 2

Answer for Brighton Main Line 2

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I can confirm that TfL has been invited by the Department for Transport (DfT) to input into the Brighton Main Line 2 (BML2) feasibility study. TfL also worked closely with Network Rail on its recent Sussex Route Study process to identify the best possible capacity schemes to support London's growth over the next 30 years. This found a package of schemes on the existing Brighton Main Line in the Croydon area and elsewhere that offered good value for money.

To date, the promoter has only provided limited information on the impacts, route, costs or benefits of BML2. I therefore welcome the feasibility study, given that there are likely to be more credible and better value ways of expanding capacity on the current route via East Croydon.

I understand that the BML2 scheme as currently proposed would require the diversion of some Tramlink services from their current reserved alignment to street running. Recent high level analysis suggests the cost of re-alignment would be at least £160m. This is in addition to disruption caused to tram and road users during construction and permanently increased journey times for two thirds of all tram passengers (circa 40 million by 2031). Future expansion of Tramlink could also be jeopardised by the scheme.

It is understood that north of Croydon, the BML2 scheme proposes to use new tracks alongside the existing Hayes branch as far as Lewisham. This also looks challenging without having adverse consequences on existing services and adjacent properties.

TfL will continue to monitor developments and work closely with DfT, Network Rail and the promoter to ensure the impacts on London are being fully assessed.