Councils call for Crossrail 2 to head east

Government is being urged to commit to an Eastern Phase for Crossrail 2 to unlock the full potential for growth in East London and South Essex.

The call follows findings from a new study which uses the latest projections on population, housing and jobs, as well as research into the benefits of Crossrail 2 services heading east through Hackney, Newham, Barking and Dagenham, Thurrock and South Essex.

It finds the huge potential for development in this region, earmarked as one of the UK’s largest strategic locations for growth, could be undermined by leaving it to be served by existing transport infrastructure.

The study, commissioned by Barking and Dagenham, Essex, Hackney and Newham councils, recommends that the Crossrail 2 track split after Angel Station. One branch would head north as planned, while another would go east to Hackney Central, before heading to Hackney Wick and out through Newham and Barking and Dagenham. This new line would then link to the existing Essex Thameside network, with Crossrail 2 services terminating at Basildon and Grays.

Lord Adonis recently announced a new report from the National Infrastructure Commission about how Crossrail 2 should progress. It recommends it focus initially on a single line heading north from Angel, via Dalston Junction and Tottenham Hale, to Hertfordshire. However, it also recommends that the possibility of an Eastern Phase be fully explored. Chancellor George Osborne subsequently backed the Crossrail 2 project in his Budget last week.

The mayors and leaders of the four councils which commissioned the study are now urging Government to commit to making this Eastern Phase integral to the future development of Crossrail 2.

Benefits of the Eastern Phase proposals include:

  • A £20.5 billion boost to the economy.
  • Support the expected population growth of 512,000 people.
  • Support the 265,000 new jobs and 233,000 new homes earmarked for the region.
  • Reduced journey times from South Essex and East London to Central London – many by more than 50%, some by almost 30 minutes.
  • Trains every four minutes between Barking and Hackney, and every eight minutes from Basildon and Grays.
  • Additional capacity for 67,000 commuters during the morning peak.
  • Relieved overcrowding on Essex Thameside Route, the District Line, the Hammersmith & City Line, and London Overground.

Source: Hackney Council

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