Network Rail has thrown its support firmly behind plans for Crossrail 2, a new cross-London railway which would relieve congestion and provide much-needed extra capacity on some of the most crowded sections of the Underground and national rail networks.
The new line – which would provide suburban and regional services between parts of Middlesex and Surrey in the south-west and Hertfordshire in the north-east, via a new central tunnel between Wimbledon and Tottenham – is recommended in the final report of London First’s Crossrail taskforce, chaired by former transport secretary Lord Adonis.
Welcoming the report, David Higgins, Network Rail chief executive, said: “If the capital’s economy is to continue to thrive then we must plan now, together, for the transport infrastructure requirements of London’s future.
“Our projections show that by 2031 we will need to accommodate 36% more commuters into London each day. Network Rail is already delivering the biggest capacity improvement programme since the Victorian era, but even that will not be enough on some routes.
“A regional Crossrail 2 scheme will provide the capacity we need to provide for the commuters of the future, providing extra capacity to and through central London and easing overcrowding on the already congested routes into Waterloo and Liverpool Street.”