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DfT and TfL publish report setting out options for step free Crossrail

The joint sponsors of Crossrail, the Department for Transport (DfT) and Transport for London (TfL), have reaffirmed their aim of making the entire route accessible and published options to make the remaining seven stations step free.

The route will serve 40 stations from Reading and Maidenhead in the west and Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east. Eight stations are already step free and work is underway to upgrade or build 25 more to give step free access for the first time. The joint sponsors are working on plans for the remaining seven.

The report sets out practical, workable solutions that could be implemented at Seven Kings, Maryland, Manor Park, Hanwell, Iver, Taplow and Langley. Further work will be undertaken to verify technical and engineering assumptions as well as further develop the plans. TfL and the DfT are currently looking at funding options to pay for these improvements.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “London now has one of the most accessible public transport networks in the world, with further improvements underway at stations, bus stops and on our trains. It is therefore only right that Crossrail is also part of that accessible future. This report sets out workable solutions for step-free access at all Crossrail stations and I will continue working alongside the DfT and TfL to help deliver that.”

Transport Minister Stephen Hammond said: “World class transport networks are a vital part in the national economic plan but they have to be accessible to all. This is why everyone in the Crossrail family supports the aim of making all of the route accessible. The publication of this study is a step in the right direction.” 

Mike Brown MVO, the Managing Director of London Underground and London Rail, said: “Crossrail is going to transform how people travel in and across London and we are committed to making the entire railway open to everyone.  Providing an accessible transport network is a priority for TfL and we have already made significant improvements to make travelling in London easier for customers with disabilities.  The provision of 40 step free stations for Crossrail is an important part of that work so that London can continue to deliver greater accessibility.”

The new Crossrail train fleet will be built to the latest standards of accessibility. Crossrail trains will have dedicated, clearly distinguished priority seats and space for wheelchairs. Each carriage will provide both visual and audio information about the train’s journey.

Crossrail will be fully operational by the end of 2019. The line will boost London’s rail-based capacity by 10 per cent connecting Reading and Heathrow in the west and Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east. It is connecting people and places, providing faster journey times and up to 24 trains per hour between Paddington and Whitechapel during the peak.

It is estimated that Crossrail will generate at least 75,000 business opportunities and support the equivalent of 55,000 full time jobs right around the UK. Three out of five businesses currently winning work on the project are based outside London and over half are small and medium-size companies (SMEs).

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