Spending Review: Government to review Crossrail 2 case

Both options for the Crossrail 2 route run from Angel to King's Road Chelsea
Image caption Both options for the Crossrail 2 route run from Angel to King's Road Chelsea

The government is to "look at the case for" Crossrail 2 in London and give the mayor almost £9bn of capital spending and extra financing power by 2020.

The funding was announced in the chancellor's Spending Review.

The government will provide £2m funding for a feasibility study into the £12bn Crossrail train line spanning London, the BBC understands.

It is hoped the line running from the south-west to the north-east of London will be operational by the 2030s.

London Mayor Boris Johnson said: "Today's announcement shows that the government recognises the vital importance of continued investment into London, representing good news not just for Londoners, but for the wider UK economy, with the capital being a key driver of growth across the country."

'Hard but fair'

The mayor's office said it had secured the following commitments from Chancellor George Osborne:

  • West Anglia suburban rail services to be devolved to the mayor and Transport for London
  • A £500m borrowing guarantee to support housing and transport infrastructure in Tottenham
  • A £90m commitment to carry out electrification of the Gospel Oak to Barking Overground line

But City Hall said the Transport for London (TfL) grant from government is to be cut by 8.5% - £220m a year - adding it was a "hard but fair settlement".

TfL will get a six-year funding settlement of more than £1.6bn a year, the BBC understands.

City Hall has said TfL will be able to make savings on being able to award longer contracts.

Mr Johnson said: "Transport for London will continue to drive its major programme of efficiencies and savings to demonstrate value for the taxpayer."

'Deeply disappointing'

But London Assembly Labour member Len Duvall said the announcement was "deeply disappointing for London rather than coming forward with a plan to get investment and growth going today what we have are more cuts".

"It is deeply worrying that Transport for London was singled out by the chancellor."

Liberal Democrat London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon said: "The big picture is that vital investment in transport in London has been protected.

"Tube upgrades and other much needed investments projects can now continue right through to the end of this decade."

TfL declined to comment.

The proposed Crossrail 2 line would relieve the Victoria line and parts of the Piccadilly and Northern Tube lines, and boost the city's rail capacity by 10%. It would also connect south London with the new High Speed 2 network.

TfL began a public consultation into possible routes for a Crossrail 2 train line last month.

The routes for consideration are from Wimbledon in south-west London to Alexandra Palace in the north, or Alexandra Palace and Hertfordshire to south-west London and Surrey.

The online consultation will run until 2 August.

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