Crossrail is set to have “terrible” interchanges with Underground lines in London, and delay with completing the project means that Crossrail 2 is “effectively being suspended”, predicted the former Transport Secretary Lord Adonis.
Speaking at a seminar last week, Lord Adonis spoke of the length of time it takes at St Pancras station for passengers transferring between Thameslink and the Victoria Line. “You might as well describe them as two separate stations; and lessons have not been learnt for Crossrail, whose interchanges are terrible.”
He went on to say: “Delays with Crossrail are doing huge damage to the case for national infrastructure investment; Crossrail 2 is basically not going to happen now. I don’t mind betting that the Treasury will do their damndest to try and push it back six months to a year, two, three years as it is very easy to move these things to the right.
“Crossrail 2, which is desperately needed, is essentially being suspended as a result of delays to Crossrail.”
Lord Adonis added that, when open, Crossrail will turn out to be a “huge success, even though the interchanges are terrible; the fact that it could have been a lot better will be discounted”.
He went on to say that early plans for a Crossrail station at Bond Street had no interchange at all with the Jubilee Line – something which has since been included – and spoke of his concern that High Speed 2 connections with other lines at Old Oak Common and Euston are not as good as he thinks they should be.
Lord Adonis added that too many major railway stations demonstrate poor interchange with other forms of public transport. He said that passenger transfer to London’s public cycle hire scheme could be better, and asked why many bus and coach stations in regional cities are some way away from the trains.
He was speaking at a ‘Movement Matters’ seminar in London organised by transport consultant Steer.
In response to the suggestion of delays to Crossrail 2, a Transport for London spokesman said: “Crossrail 2 is still very much needed, although the focus is obviously on getting Crossrail open.”