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Crossrail: Annual Update

Volume 612: debated on Thursday 30 June 2016

On Tuesday 23 February 2016, Her Majesty The Queen visited the under-construction Crossrail station at Bond Street where it was announced that the new railway will be known as the Elizabeth line in her honour. The renaming, which will take effect when central London services commence in December 2018, is in recognition and celebration of Her Majesty The Queen’s 64 years as the longest-reigning British monarch.

In the past year we have made great progress in many different areas of the project. The project is now approaching 75% complete with work well under way on planning for and delivering an operational railway. In the central tunnel section, the first 13 km of track has now been laid, approaching 70% of platforms have been completed, 77% of platform edge screens have been constructed and the opening of the temporary ticket hall at Whitechapel has been achieved.

At the end of May 2015, TfL rail services commenced between Shenfield and Liverpool Street. MTR Crossrail has been operating the service since then as a precursor to full services commencing with the new Bombardier rolling stock, progressively from May 2017. Performance has improved, with MTR Crossrail and Network Rail being awarded the transport team partnership of the year at the London transport awards.

Practical completion of Canary Wharf station was achieved on 7 September 2015, the first station contract to do so, four months ahead of schedule. Work began six and a half years ago on this project, with Canary Wharf Group contributing £150 million.

In November 2015, Transport for London released details of the train designs which will carry Elizabeth line passengers along the future route. The rolling stock, which is being manufactured and assembled at Bombardier’s plant in Derby, will each provide space for 1,500 customers and will ensure that the future capacity of the central London rail network will increase by 10%. The carriages of the first train have now been built and are being tested for use in Bombardier’s “V” shop testing and commissioning facility which was recently opened by the Secretary of State for Transport.

Major surface works being delivered by Network Rail on the existing rail network continue apace and are now approximately 65% complete, with a number of key milestones reached. Christmas 2015 and Easter 2016, as well as two bank holidays in May 2016, saw Network Rail successfully deliver Crossrail project works as part of some of the largest investment programmes ever undertaken on the national network, without overrun.

In addition, station designs at West Ealing and Southall stations have been approved; the civil engineering work at Acton dive-under and Stockley flyover is approaching completion; and construction is well under way to rebuild Abbey Wood station. On the north eastern section of the route, improvement work is well under way at all 13 stations.

I am delighted to report that 573 apprenticeships have now been created. This goes alongside over 1,000 work experience opportunities and over 12,000 enrolments on courses at the Crossrail Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy, which opened in 2012.

The Crossrail Board continues to forecast that the costs of constructing Crossrail will be within the agreed funding limits and that it will be completed on schedule. We still expect Crossrail to cost no more than £14.5 billion (excluding rolling stock costs). This is despite cost pressures across the project. However, these continue to be managed and Crossrail Ltd is implementing initiatives to deliver cost efficiencies during the remainder of the programme. Crossrail’s joint sponsors will continue to meet regularly with Crossrail Ltd to ensure that the project is being successfully managed and will be delivered within budget and on schedule.

During the passage of the Crossrail Bill through Parliament, a commitment was given that a statement would be published at least every 12 months until the completion of the construction of Crossrail, setting out information about the project’s funding and finances.

In line with this commitment, this statement comes within 12 months of the last one which was published on 2 July 2015. The relevant information is as follows:

Total funding amounts provided to Crossrail Ltd by the Department for Transport and TfL in relation to the construction of Crossrail to the end of the period (22 July 2008-29 May 2016).


Expenditure incurred (including committed land and property spend not yet paid out) by Crossrail Ltd in relation to the construction of Crossrail in the period (30 May 2015 to 29 May 2016) (excluding recoverable VAT on land and property purchases).


Total expenditure incurred (including committed land and property spend not yet paid out) by Crossrail Ltd in relation to the construction of Crossrail to the end of the period (22 July 2008 to 29 May 2016) (excluding recoverable VAT on land and property purchases).


The Amounts realised by the disposal of any land or property for the purposes of the construction of Crossrail by the Secretary of State, TfL or Crossrail Ltd in the period covered by the statement.



Construction figures as of 29 May 2016. The total funding amounts provided to CRL by the Department of Transport and Transport for London refers to the expenditure drawn down from the sponsor funding account in the period 22 July 2008 and 29 May 2016. Included within the amount is £1,376,331,092 of interim funding that has been provided to Network Rail to finance the delivery of the on network works between 1 April 2009 and 29 May 2016. This amount is due to be repaid to CRL by 30 September 2017.

The numbers above are drawn from Crossrail Ltd’s books of account and have been prepared on a consistent basis with the update provided last year. The figure for expenditure incurred includes monies already paid out in relevant periods, including committed land and property expenditure where this has not yet been paid. It does not include future expenditure on construction contracts that have been awarded.