Staying on Track
The need for continued investment in the London Thames Gatewayâ€™s transport infrastructure
Foreword Welcome to ‘Staying on Track’, the first of a new series of reports produced by the Thames Gateway London Partnership. These reports will give us an opportunity to explore the key policy issues affecting our area which were first raised in our pre-election prospectus, ‘Return on Capital’. One of the policy areas where the Thames Gateway London Partnership is particularly active is in driving the local campaign for continued investment in transport infrastructure here in the Gateway. Over the last 25 years, successful transport projects such as City Airport, the Jubilee Line extension and the Docklands Light Railway have transformed the area, supporting the physical and economic regeneration of the Thames Gateway and helping to establish it as the only area in the country ready and able to absorb the levels of economic and residential growth forecast for London and the South East. But the scale of the successful schemes already in place in London and the Gateway should not mean that new infrastructure
projects – both those in the planning stages and those in development - become a victim of the need to address the deficit. Their success should act as evidence for the importance of considered and targeted investment in infrastructure as a catalyst for growth. We are delighted that what this report demonstrates is a strong consensus on the need for continued leadership and investment in our transport infrastructure. Nowhere is this clearer than in the cross-party and industry support expressed here for the full completion of Crossrail. Senior figures from our major local industries also make a compelling case for the importance of seizing this unique opportunity to shape our high speed rail network as a driver of growth and international connectivity for both the Thames Gateway and the UK. The Partnership believes that there are a series of specific actions with regards to transport infrastructure which should be committed to. It is absolutely crucial that Crossrail must be built to its planned scope, with the existing commitment to build to Abbey Wood and Shenfield met before exploring the extension of the service east to Ebbsfleet. Building Crossrail to Abbey Wood will begin the process of opening up
South East London, increasing access to employment, supporting development and relieving the pressure on existing lines. TGLP also believe that the proposed HS2 rail route should be reconsidered, and that the scheme must include London Stratford station. We are also working with the London Borough of Newham to make the case for Stratford to be used for international rail services. The Partnership also believes that an agreed and funded package of river crossings are needed along the London Thames Gateway. Effective transport infrastructure is the backbone of the Gateway and it would be short-term thinking to view current projects as prime candidates for reduction or cutbacks. Action taken now should not inhibit the ability to create growth, and a failure to support and invest in our growing transport infrastructure would represent a damaging false economy.
Chair, Thames Gateway London Partnership
Theresa Villiers MP Theresa Villiers MP is Minister of State for Transport with responsibility for London, Crossrail and European and international engagement. Faced with the largest budget deficit in this country’s peacetime history, the new Coalition Government’s overwhelming priority is to put Britain’s finances back on track. If we had stuck to the spending plans that we inherited from the previous Government, British taxpayers would have been paying £70bn a year in interest on our national debt by the end of this Parliament. This would be an unsustainable and potentially disastrous drain on our economy after such a severe recession. So we have taken immediate action to tackle public spending. After setting out plans to reduce our structural deficit in the Emergency Budget, the next milestone on the road to fiscal recovery will be the Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR), which the Chancellor will announce in October.
But cutting unaffordable spending is only part of the challenge we face. We also need to generate new economic activity across Britain, and create many thousands of new jobs in key regions like the Thames Gateway by supporting the business sector and providing an attractive commercial environment for investors.
“London and the Thames Gateway needs an accessible transport system that effectively links communities and employers. ” Despite the current pressure on budgets, the Government is absolutely clear that investment in our transport infrastructure is essential for economic growth. London and the Thames Gateway needs an accessible transport system that effectively links communities and employers; that spreads opportunity while protecting the environment; and that puts the travelling public first. We also acknowledge that simply maintaining current transport capacity will be insufficient to meet the future demand of passengers and businesses in the South East. So we are
committed to investing in those transport infrastructure projects that meet rigorous cost-benefit standards – in other words, those that deliver the most effective results for the passenger, the economy and the taxpayer. The Coalition Agreement included a pledge to put rail at the heart of our future transport strategy. We are determined to reform our railway network to tackle overcrowding and make those who run the network more accountable to customers.
“We believe Crossrail can be a significant growth generator throughout London, the Thames Gateway, and well beyond. ”
Rail and the Thames Gateway Significant investment within the Thames Gateway – for example on the East London Line, Docklands Light Railway and at stations like Stratford and Ebbsfleet International – continues to deliver better services and better journeys for rail passengers. We have also made clear our support for Crossrail, because we believe it can be a significant growth generator throughout London, the Thames Gateway and well beyond. That is why we are working closely with the Mayor and Transport for London to get the very best return for money invested in Crossrail. But just like any other major infrastructure project, it needs to be tested and re-tested at every stage and along every mile to reduce costs and improve value.
“Simply maintaining current transport capacity will be insufficient to meet the future demand of passengers and businesses in the South East. ” Work is progressing well – with around 2500 people currently working on the project. Much
of the land needed for construction has been purchased, and enabling work is continuing at sites around the Capital. Crossrail Ltd has already been successful in identifying some savings through measures like reducing staff and administration costs, and renegotiating IT contracts. The challenge now facing all those involved in the project is to find further efficiencies – for example through risk mitigation, more effective procurement, and seeking ways to engineer costs down. In addition to Crossrail, which will transform rail connections across South East England, we have a vision to transform rail connections across Britain with a new high speed network. I believe the Conservatives changed the debate on the future of long distance transport in Britain back in 2008, when in Opposition we made a commitment on high speed rail. Now in Government, our goal of achieving a national high speed network has been taken forward into the Coalition Agreement. As a first stage, we have asked HS2 Ltd to be ready to consult on a route between London and the West Midlands early in 2011. But we also believe there is a strong case for
the new high speed network to be linked to Heathrow and to the rest of Europe via the Channel Tunnel. We believe in high speed rail’s potential to increase transport capacity and improve connections; to help regenerate and boost regional economies; to encourage modal shift from roads and short-haul aviation; and to support the creation of a low carbon 21st century economy. Alongside these ambitions for new high speed links, we have also announced the sale of HS1 Ltd. This will generate muchneeded capital for the public purse, and the successful bidder will be incentivised to improve passenger services on the line. I hope and expect to see new operators, including new international carriers alongside Eurostar, serving new routes and new stations, and improving connectivity between London and the Continent. As the Government considers its spending options for the future, every major transport infrastructure project will be analysed, and potential benefits will be assessed against costs. Our dual challenge is to ensure that every pound of public money invested in major transport schemes delivers exceptional value, while ensuring that important regions like the Thames Gateway can help lead Britain’s economy into a brighter future.
The existing commitment to build the eastern end of Crossrail to Abbey Wood and Shenfield must be met.
Rob Holden CBE Rob Holden CBE is the Chief Executive of Crossrail. He previously worked on the introduction of High Speed 1 as Chief Executive of London and Continental Railways and was Chairman of Eurostar (UK) Ltd. Crossrail, a railway from Maidenhead in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east will increase the rail-based public transport provision in London and the South East, including the Thames Gateway by 10 per cent. It connects the City, Canary Wharf, the West End and Heathrow Airport to commuter areas east and west of the capital via a new central tunnelled section. Crossrail is now more important to the UK economy than ever before. Latest economic forecasts suggest that Crossrail will add £42bn to the economy, resulting in a £17bn tax boost for the Treasury. Crucially Crossrail retains the full support of its two sponsors, the Government and the Mayor of London. On 15 June 2010 the new Transport Secretary Philip Hammond confirmed the Government’s commitment to the project when he said: “The Government is committed to this project. We have no plans
to reduce its scope. We want this project to be delivered in its entirety.” The Crossrail team and its delivery partners fully recognise that Crossrail’s £15.9bn funding provision is a significant investment, particularly during times of severe public sector spending restraint. It is therefore more critical than ever that every pound spent on this vital scheme achieves maximum value for money. Sensible efficiency savings will be made at every opportunity. We are currently looking at all aspects of Crossrail to identify and deliver cost savings wherever practicable. Crossrail is working hard to deliver the full scheme required by the sponsors, and the momentum is building. There is a huge amount of activity taking place across the route including stakeholder engagement, detailed design work, procurement, lodging planning consents, acquiring land and property and main construction. We are now preparing to award the contracts to drive the central section tunnels and work is in hand to start the procurement for the Crossrail train fleet. Crossrail in the Thames Gateway Crossrail has a huge impact beyond Canary Wharf and the City. It will provide improved services eastward and better access for the
town centres at Whitechapel, Custom House, Woolwich and Abbey Wood as well as major regenerative opportunities to East London and the Thames Gateway. In the London Borough of Newham, five Crossrail stations will allow for quicker and less crowded journeys for passengers, and provide enormous economic benefits to the borough. Crossrail provides a huge boost to the regeneration taking place in Canning Town, Custom House, Silvertown and Stratford City. In the Royal Docks area in particular, the revamped Custom House station will cut journey times to Paddington from 40 minutes to just 18 minutes. For both ExCeL London and London City Airport, the major upgrade of transport infrastructure in the area is particularly welcome, for the improved access for their customers and for their future expansion plans. Between Crossrail and the newly completed Woolwich DLR extension last year, the Royal Docks faces a dynamic future with economic and social prosperity for both businesses and local communities. Woolwich is a major transport interchange for south-east London, served by South East Trains and some 190 buses every hour, and now the DLR. It already plays an important role as a link to the Thames Gateway, as well
Crossrail: Building the Future as giving many people in south-east London the opportunity to access the expanding labour market at Canary Wharf. There has been strong investment in the Royal Arsenal site, as well as new commercial investment in Woolwich town centre and new retail developments. A Crossrail station here, partly funded by Berkeley Homes, provides rapid connections to Canary Wharf, the City of London, the West End and Heathrow that will make a substantial difference and ensure that the regeneration takes root for the long term. The south-eastern branch terminates at Abbey Wood, where the Crossrail service will improve journey opportunities and cut travel times for passengers. Once in place, passengers will be able to reach Whitechapel in 14 minutes, Paddington in 28 minutes and Heathrow in 54 minutes. The existing station will be rebuilt: a new cross-platform interchange will create a smooth connection for passengers wishing to travel to and from North Kent, with a maximum five-minute wait for a Crossrail train during peak hours; and the station will be refurbished and expanded to create a new, open environment. A ticket hall, new staircases and lifts will be fitted, and the station will provide step-free access and allow for more effective interchange with local bus services. The Crossrail Act provides for a terminus
at Abbey Wood. This does not preclude a later extension further east into Kent as far as Gravesend, and the route has been safeguarded by the Department for Transport to prepare for this eventuality. Approval for the necessary works could be obtained through normal process such as an order under the Transport and Works Act. Crossrail has a leading role to play in supporting regeneration and the economy, and the project has the opportunity to support the skills development of those working on building Crossrail. Up to 14,000 people will be employed at the peak of construction between 2013 and 2015. In July we launched our Skills and Employment Strategy, which sets out how local people will be provided with opportunities to work on Crossrailâ€™s construction. Our contractors will advertise vacancies through Jobcentre Plus who will target local people, working with local job brokerages as well as their own centres to find suitable candidates for the job opportunities available. In addition we are committed to delivering at least 400 apprenticeships through our supply chain over the lifetime of the project. We are also building a Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy at Aldersbrook on the border of the London Boroughs of Newham and Redbridge. The
Academy is being developed on behalf of the construction and related industries to ensure that the country has enough people trained to work safely in underground construction. Crossrail wants to provide training in the key skills required to work in and around a tunnel excavation and building environment, and the Academy will ensure that all personnel working underground on the project achieve the right safety card before working on any Crossrail site. Taken together, these measures will give Londoners the chance to build and benefit from Crossrail even before the first trains are open for service. For the London Thames Gateway area, Crossrail follows a series of improvements which have boosted transport accessibility: the Docklands Light Railway extension to City Airport and Woolwich, DLR 3 Car works and the London Overground (East London Line) extension have been completed while the DLR extension to Stratford International is nearing completion. Further projects include the London tube upgrades, Thameslink and the East London Transit. These improvements to the transport network offer unparalleled prospects for regeneration in the Thames Gateway and help support and drive future economic growth for the capital and the UK as a whole.
Baroness Jo Valentine
Baroness Jo Valentine became Chief Executive of London First in 2003. She became a Crossbench Peer in October 2005.
The new Government faces huge challenges in tackling the UK’s record deficit. Most of London’s businesses are supportive of their broad approach - to bridge the gap mainly by cutting recurring spending, in preference to increasing taxes. London competes for investment and talent against global rivals; an uncompetitive corporate or personal tax regime damages the UK economy’s capacity to grow. Business-led growth remains the best way to economic health in the medium term. However, the commute into central London is a grim reminder of how London’s economic success has outstripped improvements to its public transport networks. But for the last few years, commuters have been able to look forward to a future rather less awful. Decades of underinvestment in London’s
transport infrastructure are being addressed by a concerted, long-term programme of investment and renewal. TfL has acquired the equity in Tube Lines, putting an end to public acrimony over the controversial PPP, and placing the onus firmly with the Mayor to deliver the Tube improvements which businesses and commuters desperately need. Construction of Crossrail is underway and the upgrade of the Tube is starting to bring tangible benefits to passengers. “About time!” say the commuters. But as the Government strives to balance the books and foster long-term sustainable economic growth, risk to continued investment in London’s transport infrastructure looms. At times when tight and difficult public spending decisions need to be taken, capital spending is often the first target for cuts. The unpleasant, unthinkable prospect for London is that this could translate into the scaling down or
“The commute into central London is a grim reminder of how London’s economic success has outstripped improvements to its public transport networks.”
scrapping of key projects like Crossrail or the Tube upgrades. Cutting this most vital of capital investment would be economically obtuse and, given that commuters have hundreds of thousands of votes, politically unwise. UK growth and the revitalisation of London’s economically underachieving eastern quarter, are disproportionally dependent on action to reverse the decline across London’s ageing transport network. Demands on transport infrastructure are predicted to increase dramatically by 2031. London’s population - currently 7.7 million - is estimated to rise to 8.89 million by 2031. Journeys on public transport will increase by nearly three million per day as these people commute to work and move around the city. Parts of Central London already have the highest employment density in the UK - the City has around 250,000 employees, and Canary Wharf around 600,000 employees, per square mile. Crossrail and a modernised Tube will reduce overcrowding and improve journey times for millions of passengers. Crucially, they will also accommodate forecast growth in demand that comes with London’s economic growth.
Planning for Growth Transport infrastructure is a driver of quality of life. Percentage increases in transport capacity translate in real, human terms to improved quality - reliability, ease of movement, less crowded conditions.
“Cutting this most vital of capital investment would be economically obtuse and, given that commuters have hundreds of thousands of votes, politically unwise. ” Crossrail will increase UK economic output (GDP – Gross Domestic Product)) by up to £31bn over sixty years (and Treasury’s tax revenues by £12bn). The 10% it adds to London’s rail capacity, and the extra 1.5 million people it brings within a 60-minute commute of the City, will help to create an estimated 30,000 high-value jobs. Crossrail helps to secure the regeneration legacy of the Olympic transformation, as would the Mayor’s plans for additional river crossings to link Canary Wharf, ExCeL, O2 and the Olympic Park.
The improvements brought about by the Tube modernisation programme will end the impoverished travelling experience of millions who work and live in London while, critically, meeting the capital’s planned growth. In addition to Crossrail, they will bring approximately 30% more capacity by 2026. Without modernisation of the Tube by 2026, twice as many passengers – half a million each morning – would commute in “very crowded” conditions – the equivalent to four or more people in a telephone box. Modernisation of the tube will produce £30.5 billion of direct benefits to users as a result of time savings and improved travel conditions, and generate wider economic benefits for Britain - in the order of £36 billion of additional GDP. Earlier in the summer, London First published a new report Greater Returns: Transport Priorities for Economic Growth, which examined the way in which Government evaluates spending on transport. Until now, Government calculations of cost:benefit ratios have been partial and inconsistent. They often fail to fully capture the economic and social value of projects and programmes, and are rarely comparable between themselves.
“Crossrail helps to secure the regeneration legacy of the Olympic transformation, as would the Mayor’s plans for additional river crossings to link Canary Wharf, ExCeL, O2 and the Olympic park. ” With the current economic uncertainty, a focus on value for money is inevitable and right. The Government faces hard, unpalatable choices as it tackles the fiscal deficit and seeks to maintain the longterm sustainable recovery of the economy. Ministers understand transport’s impact on productivity and growth, but when making difficult choices with limited resources, a starting point for decision-makers should be the rigorous prioritisation of transport investment most likely to sustain growth.
Heidi Alexander MP Heidi Alexander MP was elected as Labour MP for the Lewisham East constituency in 2010. She previously served as a Lewisham councillor and was vice-chair of TGLP’s Skills, Employment and Innovation committee. Ask people in Lewisham what needs to change about transport in their area and I suspect they would say the following: less overcrowding on rush hour trains, fewer cars clogging up the roads and a tube station – preferably more than one. Whilst some of these aspirations may be common to many parts of the capital, the lack of any real tube service in South East London, makes our transport challenges all the more pressing. Whilst we have the DLR in the north of the borough and the new East London Line skirts the Western half of Lewisham, my constituency, Lewisham East, has yet to make it onto the tube map. Instead, in an area bisected by overland railway lines and the South Circular, residents in Lewisham East rely upon crowded South Eastern Trains, a road network that is bursting at its seams and a healthy dose of buses to get to where they need to go.
Like many parts of East and South East London, Lewisham is a place of many contrasts. My constituency is no exception. It stretches from the leafy streets of Blackheath and Lee Green through multicultural Lewisham and Catford to the housing estates of Downham and Grove Park. It has one of the smallest business bases in London, yet is home to a significant proportion of London’s workforce. It’s also a through-route for the even larger numbers of people travelling into and across London from Greenwich, Bexley, Bromley and beyond. Lewisham roads and Lewisham trains bear the burden of these daily commutes yet Lewisham residents have their own transport needs which mustn’t be overlooked.
“Another river crossing in the East End of London is imperative.” Lewisham station is the busiest train station in South East London. But it’s busy even by national standards. In 2007/8, over 3 million passenger entries were recorded there – more than Bromley, Orpington or Sevenoaks. For those of us who live in Lewisham, this isn’t a surprise. Seventy per cent of Lewisham residents who work, leave the borough every day to do so. In the 2001 census, more people travelled to work by train in Lewisham East (as a proportion of the working population)
than in any other parliamentary constituency. If you live in Lewisham and want a job, not only do you need the right skills to get it but you also have to have a decent means of getting there. But trying to board a train at Lewisham (or Blackheath, Hither Green or Catford Bridge for that matter) can be a depressing experience. Being stuck in someone’s armpit for 20 minutes at the start and end of your day does nothing for your quality of life. Add an extra 10 minutes waiting outside London Bridge station for a platform to become free and you get a sense of the daily frustrations faced by thousands of my constituents. Talk of high speed rail links to the Midlands and further afield is all well and good but what about extra capacity and more regular services on the trains where we know there is already huge demand and overcrowding? Sheffield is being mooted as a possible destination for High Speed 2 – that’s the same Sheffield station that recorded 2.94 million passenger entries in 2007/8 compared to Lewisham’s 3.15 million. Whilst High Speed Rail may be the answer to some of the country’s transport challenges, it will do nothing to improve the train system in South East London which is straining to cope with the demands of the 21st century. So what are the answers for my corner of London?
A View from South of the River Longer trains with less seats? Possibly. There are plans to make all platforms on South Eastern’s network capable of taking 12 car trains – this work must happen and the rolling stock has to be forthcoming, not only to improve the travelling experience of hundreds of thousands of current passengers but also to provide additional transport capacity for the new developments that so many of us want to see in our town centres. Local councillors will never win the argument about new housing unless there is a clear explanation about how both existing and future residents alike will be able to get to the places they want to go.
“The additional capacity that the link to Abbey Wood delivers could have significant knock-on effects across the sub-region.” What about Crossrail? Would Crossrail make a difference to Lewisham’s travelling public? Yes – probably. Anything that can divert passengers away from already crowded overland train services and free up some space in trains when they get to stations in my constituency has to be a good thing. Crossrail stations at Woolwich and Abbey Wood seem to hold such promise. Whilst the South Eastern timetables and train paths would have to be
organised in a way which would allow this, the additional capacity that the link to Abbey Wood delivers could have significant knock-on effects across the sub-region. However, the long-term solution to improving public transport in South East London is probably more radical. Transport for London have explored the possibility of extending the Bakerloo Line to Lewisham, where it could join the Hayes Line, running down through Catford. Network Rail make reference to such an extension in their Route Utilisation Strategy. Whilst public spending constraints means such a project is decades off (let’s get Crossrail sorted first!), surely it is right that we start thinking now about how to tackle the last remaining frontier on London’s tube map. In the 19th century, work on the Bakerloo Line started, in the 20th century it got as far as Lambeth North, perhaps the 21st century is when it makes it to Lewisham. More capacity on overland trains, new Crossrail stations in South East London and a tube line in the longer term are some of the things that could make a real difference to my constituents. But so too could radical action to improve the ease with which you can cross the River Thames. If you’ve ever been in Lewisham when either the Blackwall or Rotherhithe tunnel closes, you will know what the term gridlock means.
It is ridiculous to think that in the 21 miles between Kingston Bridge and Tower Bridge there is a road bridge virtually every mile. Yet in the 10 miles between Tower Bridge and the Dartford Crossing, there isn’t one. Another river crossing in the East End of London is imperative – the sooner agreement can be reached about where it is going to be, how it is going to be funded and when work is going to start, then so much to the better. When people think of Lewisham they often struggle to place it on a mental map. Is it inner or outer London? Is it made of up of deprived estates or rows of suburban terraces? The truth is that it is a bit of both. The danger of these perceptions is that Lewisham’s transport needs get overlooked and that it is thought of only as a place where people travel through. For my constituents, who are more dependent upon the London labour market than many others in the capital, the ability to get around our fantastic world city is essential. The challenge of providing a 21st century transport system in times of enormous public spending constraint is not one that should be underestimated but it is one which must be addressed if my constituents are going to have the same chance of success in London as those who live in areas more blessed with public transport.
12:40 ON TIME EMployment access International Crossrail will add 10% to the overall trains capacity of London’s rail network, 12:35
serving significant new residential areas in the Thames gateway and in the South East.
Employment accessibility in the Gateway will be greatly enhanced by Crossrail, with an extra 1.5 million people brought within an hour’s travel of the West End, the City and Docklands.
Some 30% of Eurostar passengers would switch from St Pancras if they were able to access international services at Stratford. The revenue contribution from stopping at Stratford International will be around £5.5 million by 2016 and £7million by 2026.
12:42 ON TIME Journey Times The Crossrail journey time from Abbey Wood to the City/ Liverpool Street will be just 22 minutes. In 2010 the journey time is 40 minutes, nearly twice as long. Over 35% of future employment growth in London is expected to be in areas served by Crossrail.
12:50 ON TIME Access to
More than 90,000 people currently work in Canary Wharf, with the potential for a further 110,000 jobs by 2031.
East London is expected to accommodate up to 249,000 new jobs by 2016, almost 40% of London’s total employment growth, and nearly a third of the capital’s new homes.
The full implementation of rail schemes including Crossrail, Thameslink and the East London line extension will mean the percentage of Londoners with high levels of accessibility to the public transport network will rise from 28% in 2009 to 31% in 2020.
ON TIME 12:58
Most employees at Canary Wharf tend to live to the West, leading to ‘severe’ LEVELS OF crowding on the Jubilee Line from Waterloo TO London Bridge. BY 2031 THESE levels OF crowding are forecast to be experienced from Waterloo through to Canary Wharf.
Transport infrastructure must be shaped in order to meet these changing demands.
Cllr Conor McAuley Cllr Conor McAuley is the Chair of the TGLP Transport Committee. He also led Newham’s successful campaign for the International Passenger Station on the Channel Tunnel Rail Link at Stratford. In building today’s transport infrastructure for both London and the UK, it is absolutely crucial to plan for the transport needs of tomorrow. The major consideration in meeting these needs must be the capital’s continuing physical and economic move to the east. The London Olympics, the development of Stratford City and investment in business in the Isle of Dogs and the Royal Docks, is driving the development of East London and the Thames Gateway at a rate not matched anywhere else in the capital. There is currently no recognised major transport hub in East London. Yet there is now a unique opportunity to connect our major transport projects through Stratford, an area which has the existing capacity, connectivity and the widest catchment area in Greater London for new passengers. Stratford is
The Missing Piece of the Jigsaw home to the Olympic Park, the biggest new urban park in the country, which is anticipated to provide for the development of 10,000 new homes. It already has five million square feet of consented office space and the Westfield development, opening in September 2011, will be the biggest urban retail development in Europe. The major issue regarding Stratford’s role in the future of national and international transport infrastructure will be how we utilise high speed rail services, both north to the rest of the UK and south to Europe. Making the right choices over high speed rail now will play a transformational role in the future economic prosperity of the country. Newham Council has been working with the Thames Gateway London Partnership to make the case for Stratford to become the UK’s newest transport hub, serving the transport needs of London, and Britain, in 2025. Stratford is the ideal location to link international services from the UK’s regions to Europe through the Channel Tunnel, as well as serving its own catchment area in London, Essex and East Anglia. International services which stop at Stratford should be a key requirement for the HS1 line, which is up for sale. The regeneration benefits seen at existing Eurostar stations have driven at least £10 billion of gross development value.
Combined with existing regeneration projects, Eurostar – and other service providers who will emerge under open access - could provide a real framework for continued and sustainable growth. The Stratford hub is the missing piece of the jigsaw, and now is the time to review the plans for HS2. Linking HS2 and HS1 will enable Stratford to service much of the UK via a quick and efficient high speed rail network. Such linkage will also enable an increasing number of intercity trains from cities on HS2 to run through to Stratford, with the station performing a support role to any HS2 terminus. With overground rail services, the Docklands Light Railway, the Central and Jubilee lines, Stratford offers an enviable number of transport connections to the rest of the capital, into West London, the City and Canary Wharf. This connectivity will be further supported by the opening of Crossrail in 2017, linking Stratford to Heathrow and the West. This is a once-in-a generation opportunity to create a sustainable transport system which supports and stimulates economic growth. We must shape high speed rail to serve the future needs of London and the UK, planning to accommodate for the rapid growth and regeneration of East London and the London Thames Gateway.
High Speed 2 route to include Stratford
International services at Stratford 12
Caroline Pidgeon AM
Caroline Pidgeon AM is Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group and is Vice Chair of the London Assembly Transport Committee.
The Thames Gateway and the surrounding area has seen substantial improvements over the last 30 years, and I commend the leadership and vision of the Thames Gateway London Partnership in playing a role in this. Even in this period of austerity and substantial cuts to transport budgets, we must continue to look forward at more innovative and greener ways to deliver and improve our transport infrastructure. The delivery of the East London Line project proves this point. Having reopened earlier this year, the East London Line has exceeded all expectations and is carrying more passengers than originally anticipated. Investment in transport projects must go ahead in order to keep London and its surrounding areas moving. One of the top priorities is Crossrail. This project must be honoured, including the existing commitment to build the eastern end of Crossrail to Abbey Wood.
Keeping London Moving We lag behind many other countries when it comes to modern railways. The expansion of high speed rail - ultimately from London to Scotland - is very welcome indeed and will transform the railway system in this country. The Coalition Government affirmed its commitment to delivering a high speed rail network in the Coalition Agreement. I welcome this news for London. Alongside this much needed transport infrastructure for passengers, I will also be championing for more freight to move to rail and off our roads. East London is an area which has long been overlooked in terms of investment and infrastructure development, but it is bursting with potential. The Olympics has been the catalyst in substantially improving transport infrastructure such as Stratford Station - it is barely recognisable already! The infrastructure and facilities surrounding the station have also seen investment and local businesses are ready to serve the additional passengers and visitors to Stratford. With this in mind, coupled with the ongoing popularity of London City Airport, there is a strong case for international services to stop at Stratford. There has long been a case to improve river crossings to the east of London. In particular I am keen to support crossings for pedestrians and cyclists. With this in mind I fully support the Mayor of Londonâ€™s cable car proposal for East London. This would be
privately funded and would provide a much needed crossing between the Greenwich peninsula and the Royal Docks. However, this can only be the start and further research and development must continue to look at alternative crossings as well as how we can use river transport much more for both freight and passengers.
â€œInvestment in transport projects must go ahead in order to keep London and its surrounding areas moving.â€? Finally, we must not overlook improving the most sustainable modes of transport, such as walking and cycling in London. It is fundamental that these modes of transport have an opportunity to develop and improve, and evolve into a safe and sustainable choice for Londoners and visitors. With the Olympics estimated to result in around half a million extra people per day using our transport system in 2012, now is the time to invest in making it easier and safer to walk and cycle around London. Most importantly, once the Olympics is over, we must ensure a legacy of a stronger, better and more accessible transport system for years to come.
â€œDevelopments and investments such as Canary Wharf, the O2, Excel and the Olympic Park have started a process of regeneration and massive structural change which is far too important to London and the UK to slow down or stop. Ensuring that critical infrastructure such as Crossrail, a new river crossing and the tube upgrades are delivered is absolutely vital for this process of economic transformation to continue.â€? Boris Johnson, Mayor of London
Sadiq Khan MP
The Need for Investment
So what are the priorities?
Crossrail will survive in its entirety. I’m all for efficient engineering, but if savings are to be found by, for example, delivering a lower capacity network, a lot of the gains will be lost. Based on the plans as set out, Crossrail could add £20 billion to London’s economy, providing up to 14,000 jobs during construction, putting 1.5 million people within an hour’s journey of London’s business centres and delivering faster journey times across the capital. It would be a missed opportunity were we to see such potential gains downgraded. The development of the North-South high-speed rail network is another vastly ambitious project, and one that could revolutionise travel between the capital and some of Britain’s other core citieshopefully one day most if not all of them. People understandably ask whether high speed rail is affordable in the current climate. To me it’s clear that if we are to develop a world leading low-carbon economy, then we must show unprecedented ambition in our transport investments. Furthermore, this is a long term project and the costs can be spread over a number of years.
Delivering Crossrail, on time, on budget, and to the specifications as laid out, would certainly be near the top of the list. The Government has claimed that, at present, the first two of these aims are looking achievable. But doubts are emerging about whether
It’s a fact that over the last couple of years, there has been a growing political consensus around the need for investment in great projects such as these. Certainly, both Crossrail and high speed rail enjoyed all party support in the run up to the election.
Sadiq Khan MP is the Shadow Secretary of State for Transport. Labour MP for Tooting since 2005, he served as Minister of State for Transport in the previous government. The new Government came into office at a time of exciting growth in London’s transport network and infrastructure. In recent years, we have seen a number of achievements with which I’m proud to be associated as a former Labour Transport Minister: ongoing modernisation of the tube, expansion of the East London line and DLR, the completion of High Speed 1 and a funding deal for Crossrail to name a few. With more major developments on the horizon, and the transition to a lowcarbon economy set in motion, transport is as high on the agenda as ever.
If there was one area of difference, it was in our approach to the expansion of aviation capacity. This is not an argument I intend to revisit here, but to say if we are not to have an expansion in capacity in the South East, then the Government has a responsibility to present its own solution to the pressing challenge of meeting the demand for growth – a need which David Cameron has acknowledged. World class aviation links are key to London’s status as a world leading business centre. My criticism is not necessarily that the Government has ruled out expansion at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted, which they pledged to do, but that they have done so without a coherent explanation as to how they will meet the challenge of growing demand and increasingly stiff competition from Europe’s other aviation hubs. We don’t yet know exactly how the Government’s austerity programme will affect transport in London, although there have been hints. It seems likely that some tube upgrade schemes will be delayed, and that we will see Crossrail being squeezed one way or another. For my part, I will continue to remind Phillip Hammond that investing in London’s infrastructure is one of the best ways to secure growth and new jobs, and as such should never be seen as a soft target, and that business in London needs greater certainty and clarity from government about the future of major transport projects.
Delivery of an agreed and funded package of river crossings along the London Thames Gateway.
John Burton John Burton is Director of Stratford City for Westfield. Stratford City, spanning over 700 acres, is one of the largest urban regeneration projects ever undertaken in the UK. As a major international investor in London, Westfield is currently developing the £1.45bn Westfield Stratford City which will open in September 2011. The 1.9m sq ft retail and leisure scheme will also include hotels, offices and homes and provide up to 18,000 permanent jobs when fully developed. Although the project was in planning before London won the rights to host the London 2012 Olympic Games, the programme for delivery of vital infrastructure and utilities has been accelerated as a result of the successful bid. This has allowed the wider regeneration of the area to take place at a much faster rate than would previously have been possible. Government spending in the area has meant that infrastructure such as the International Station and wider transport improvements have been programmed for delivery ahead of summer 2012. The International Station has
been designed to accommodate international and domestic high speed services and the Southeastern Kent Fastlink service is already in operation at the station. However, there has so far been no confirmation from Eurostar when direct international services will stop at Stratford. Following the investment in Stratford International Station, the general public and stakeholders at Thames Gateway, Canary Wharf and Stratford City expected that direct international services would be operational. Huge amounts of private sector investment is already being made into the area and international commuters are essential in order to realise the vision of a major metropolitan centre for East London. By 2012 Stratford will become a major transport hub with research from CACI suggesting that it will be one of the busiest stations on the London network. Stratford Regional station includes London Underground, London Overground, DLR and domestic national rail services and will also be served by Crossrail. The major financial districts of Canary Wharf and the City are just three stops away and Stratford has direct links to the Docklands, City Airport and the wider Thames Gateway. Direct international services will be a key part of the lasting legacy of the Olympics.
East London has the potential to become a major international business and commercial destination but this requires direct links with Europe. The international business which would come from direct stopping services at Stratford are integral to the vibrancy of Stratford City.
“Direct international services will be a key part of the lasting legacy of the Olympics. East London has the potential to become a major international business and commercial destination but this requires direct links with Europe. ” A recent independent report by Colin Buchanan Associates has concluded that the case for stopping at Stratford International is strong economically, financially and politically and would bring significant regeneration benefits. The transport case indicated that user benefits would grow from £11m in 2008 to £18m in 2026. The financial benefits were estimated to produce a revenue surplus growing from £4m in 2008
The International Case to £7m in 2020. The additional development boost and regeneration potential arising from an international stop at Stratford is considerable. International services would support government development policies in the area and leverage further private sector investment. The social regeneration which would derive from stopping services is likened to the impact the addition of the Heathrow Express has had on the Paddington area. It is also noted that other venues in the area such as O2 and Excel would be likely to benefit directly from the increase in international business commuters as well as the potential for new international investment in the area as a result of the direct transport links to Europe. At present, HS1, which owns the high speed line infrastructure, is due to be sold. Any sales should highlight the opportunity for international services to utilise Stratford International Station. The hundreds of millions of pounds needed to make Stratford International Station a reality has already been invested by the Government. This was done on the belief that direct services would operate from here and it would be viewed as wasteful if Stratford does not have direct international services. Trying to rely on the Domestic Fastlink to provide the connectivity is a poor substitute for a direct service and the
full consequences of timetable, immigration management and revenue sharing are unknown. The HS1 route was selected with regard to the regeneration benefits it would bring north of the Thames. The only way to capitalise on the significant public funds already invested is to ensure that Stratford has direct international stopping services. Therefore, there is justification for some public sector support for running international services at Stratford in the short-term until it becomes profitable for the operator.
“Stratford has the potential to take away some of the pressure from Euston and facilitates the two high speed lines joining together, taking passengers from the Midlands to Europe with just one London stop at Stratford. ” In addition, Westfield also supports the case for a direct link with the second high speed line, HS2. East London is expected to
experience unparalleled growth over the next 10 years with the majority of the capital’s housing developments being delivered in the area and the GLA predicting a population increase of 260,000 people in the five Olympic Host Boroughs over the next 20 years. East London is also expected to accommodate nearly half of London’s total employment growth by 2016. Stratford has the potential to take away some of the pressure from Euston and facilitates the two high speed lines joining together, taking passengers from the Midlands to Europe with just one London stop at Stratford. There is considerable business support for the proposals outlined above which would create a new metropolitan hub for East London at Stratford attracting inward investment from Europe and beyond. Westfield is developing Stratford City based on the long-term fundamentals of the project. With over 4 million people within 45 minutes with a total weighted spend of £3.24 billion and a relatively untapped catchment, Westfield Stratford City will be a major development within our global portfolio of 119 shopping centres. Westfield Stratford City will be the start of the legacy and the first step in creating a major metropolitan centre. Transport infrastructure is critical to securing this vision and the future prosperity of East London.
Richard Gooding OBE Richard Gooding OBE is the Chief Executive of London City Airport. He is a Council Member of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and of the Airport Operators Association. Integrated transport unlocks the potential of any development, whether commercial or residential. Transport infrastructure in the Thames Gateway has progressed significantly in the past twenty years, with the growth of London City Airport (LCY), providing key international links, the extension of the Jubilee Line to Stratford, extensions of the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) and upgrades to the road network in East London. Intensifying the operation of existing transport infrastructure in the Thames Gateway, particularly in and around the critical mass provided by Canary Wharf, is key to attracting investors to stimulate the further growth of this business district. The market will lead development in and around the Isle of Dogs to build out this area
and maximise its potential for economic success, provided by the sheer number and scale of international companies based there now and in the future. Over 100,000 people are currently employed on the Canary Wharf site alone, with capacity to grow to 250,000.
“Intensifying the operation of existing transport infrastructure in the Thames Gateway, particularly in and around the critical mass provided by Canary Wharf, is key to attracting investors to stimulate the further growth of this business district. ” While a range of exciting ideas exist for upgrading and extending transport in the Thames Gateway, clarity or confirmation about funding has not emerged. Much of the success of this area of East London is yet to come and to achieve it, we must:
Grow the international connectivity of the Thames Gateway Attracting overseas investment, particularly new businesses to locate in the Thames Gateway, requires reliable and frequent connections to international destinations. LCY provides connections to more than 30 destinations in Europe and the USA, with permission to grow in the coming years. The Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) from St Pancras, Ebbsfleet and Ashford to Paris Gare du Nord and Brussels provides an efficient rail service for business and leisure travellers.
“For the planned investment in Crossrail to be valuable to East London and the Thames Gateway as a whole, we must plan effectively for its implementation and integration with existing transport infrastructure and hinterland. ”
Growing our International Connectivity Increase the capacity and range of the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) Increasing the capacity of the DLR through additional carriages, increased frequencies, extended range and more direct routes such as from LCY to Canary Wharf, will improve convenience and reliability for businesses and local residents. The immediate take up of cross river train services provided by the extension of the DLR to Woolwich Arsenal in early 2009 has proven the demand for further investment in rail services across the River Thames to open up opportunities for those living in boroughs such as Greenwich, Bexley and Lewisham. Support existing rail services The Jubilee Line carries more than 127 million passengers per year and is the only line on the London Underground which connects with all other existing lines. Upgrades are underway to install a new signalling system to increase capacity by 33% and reduce journey times by 22%. It is expected that this work will be complete by autumn 2010. This type of investment is just one example of projects brought forward by the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games that East London will be able to take advantage of from 2010.
“Cross-river developments are keenly sought in East London in order to reduce congestion and provide access to opportunities in Canary Wharf and the wider Thames Gateway. ” Existing rail services between Central London and Essex and Kent provide a lifeline for those that have already chosen to locate in the Thames Gateway and they should be supported to ensure that operators are able to continually improve services and continue to invest in such routes, leading to further growth in these areas. In addition to international services, CTRL has also brought forward the operation of a high speed train service between Ebbsfleet in Kent and London St Pancras, opening up this part of the Thames Gateway for development. Plan effectively for Crossrail For the planned investment in Crossrail to be valuable to East London and the Thames Gateway as a whole, we must plan effectively for its implementation and integration with existing transport infrastructure and
hinterland. Crossrail provides a superb opportunity for a significant improvement in cross-London public transport, but only if it is connected with existing services and infrastructure to make it user friendly for travellers.
“Attracting overseas investment, particularly new businesses to locate in the Thames Gateway, requires reliable and frequent connections to international destinations. ” Drastically improve river crossing in East London Cross-river developments are keenly sought in East London in order to reduce congestion and provide access to opportunities in Canary Wharf and the wider Thames Gateway for those living and/or operating businesses south of the River Thames. The London Plan remains inadequate on this point. Regeneration is transport infrastructure led and its importance should not be underestimated in order to exploit the opportunities the Thames Gateway offers.
About the Thames Gateway London Partnership ‘Staying on Track’ is the first in a series of policy reports published by the Thames Gateway London Partnership, each of which will concentrate on a specific campaign area in which TGLP is active. We also publish a monthly newsletter by email for our members and stakeholders, rounding up the latest news affecting the Gateway, highlighting our upcoming events and publications and giving an overview of TGLP’s campaigning activity. If you would like to be added to the mailing list to receive our reports or our monthly newsletters, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Thames Gateway London Partnership (TGLP) is a cross-river, cross-party organisation, made up of the 11 local authorities and the eight universities in the Thames Gateway London area, Dartford Borough Council and NHS London. Representing the whole of the London Thames Gateway (LTG) area, we campaign on behalf of our members to ensure the area is able to live up to its enormous potential and remains a key national and regional priority.
With an independently appointed Chair, our work is democratically accountable through our local authority membership.
Figures taken from research published by the London Borough of Newham, the Mayor of London and Transport for London. Opinions expressed by contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of the Thames Gateway London Partnership or our members.
Thames Gateway London Partnership 8th Floor, Anchorage House 2 Clove Crescent East India Dock, London E14 2BE Tel 020 7673 4578 • Fax 020 7673 4899 www.thames-gateway.org.uk Ben Wright Mob 07584 237 638 Email email@example.com
TGLP Transport Paper