Network Rail has awarded a major contract, with a value of approximately £130m, to Balfour Beatty Rail for the construction of a two-mile section of the Crossrail route from Plumstead to Abbey Wood in southeast London.
The contract will include:
* The installation of two new dedicated Crossrail lines from Abbey Wood to the Plumstead portal, providing access to the new Crossrail tunnels. The Crossrail lines will run alongside the existing North Kent lines; and
* Works to modify several bridges along the route to accommodate the overhead electric wires and two new lines that will be used by the new Crossrail trains.
* The contract will also include construction of a new station building at Abbey Wood with a new Crossrail platform that will allow for easy interchange with north Kent services. Designs for the new station are currently being finalised. The main construction works will start in 2014, with some preparatory work expected to start later this year.
When Crossrail opens, up to 12 trains per hour in each direction will link southeast London and the Royal Docks with Canary Wharf, central London and beyond, slashing journey times and boosting regeneration in the area.
Passengers in southeast London will benefit from some of Crossrail’s most significant time savings. With Crossrail, the journey from Abbey Wood to Bond Street will be around 20 minutes quicker and passengers travelling to Heathrow will be able to shave around 40 minutes off their journey.
Peter Mason, Network Rail’s crossrail senior programme manager, said: “Network Rail is undertaking a major upgrade of the existing rail network for Crossrail, including a significant programme of track renewals as well as station improvements. The transformed Abbey Wood station will act as a catalyst for the regeneration of the surrounding area and provide opportunities for local employment, meeting the development aspirations of the two London boroughs it serves, Greenwich and Bexley. We’re now looking forward to continuing our excellent partnership with Balfour Beatty Rail to deliver this exciting project.”
Matt White, surface director at Crossrail said: “Crossrail will transform rail travel for local residents and contribute significantly to the regeneration in this part of southeast London. Fast, frequent and direct services will link residents with central London and beyond, slashing journey times and making it easier to get to a whole range of destinations.”
Under the Crossrail programme, Network Rail is responsible for the upgrade of 43 miles of track, as well as improving 27 stations from Maidenhead in the west to Abbey Wood and Shenfield in the east.