Transport for London said the Elizabeth line will open on Tuesday 24 May 2022. The new line line will transform travel across London…reports Asian Lite News
Transport for London (TfL) said the Elizabeth line will open on Tuesday 24 May 2022. The Elizabeth line will transform travel across London and the South East by dramatically improving transport links, cutting journey times, providing additional capacity, and transforming accessibility with spacious new stations and walk-through trains.
The Elizabeth line will initially operate as three separate railways, with services from Reading, Heathrow and Shenfield connecting with the central tunnels from autumn this year. Contactless payments will be accepted across the Elizabeth line. While customers will need to touch out at Paddington and Liverpool Street to change to Elizabeth line services towards Reading/Heathrow and Shenfield, fare capping will be in place.
In the coming weeks, Elizabeth line signage will continue to be uncovered across the network in preparation for the start of customer service. The updated Tube and Rail map will also be released later showing the new central section stations connected with the rest of the TfL network for the first time.
The new line is set to be crucial to London’s recovery from the pandemic, helping avoid a car-led recovery by providing new journey options, supporting regeneration across the capital, and adding an estimated £42bn to the UK economy.
“I’m delighted that our world-class new Elizabeth line will be opening to passengers later this month, helping build a better London – one which is safer, fairer, greener and more prosperous city for all Londoners,” said Mayor Sadiq Khan. “This is the most significant addition to our transport network in decades, and will revolutionise travel across the capital and the south east – as well as delivering a £42 billion boost to the whole UK economy and hundreds of thousands of new homes and jobs.
“Green public transport is the future and the opening of the Elizabeth line is a landmark moment for our capital and our whole country, particularly in this special Platinum Jubilee year. I’m so proud of this new line and can’t wait for millions of passengers to start riding on the Elizabeth line from 24 May.”
Known as the Elizabeth line, it was meant to start running in December 2018 but the £18.8bn project has missed multiple targets amid ballooning costs. The railway will link Reading and Essex via central London. Once the route is open, services in the central London section will run every five minutes between 06:30 BST and 23:00, although a full timetable will not be in place until May 2023.
The Elizabeth line will operate 12 trains per hour between Paddington and Abbey Wood from Monday to Saturday 06:30 to 23:00. Work will continue in engineering hours and on Sundays to allow a series of testing and software updates in preparation for more intensive services from the autumn.
All services between Reading and Heathrow to Paddington and Shenfield to Liverpool Street, currently operating as TfL Rail, will be rebranded to the Elizabeth line. Customers travelling between Reading or Heathrow into London will need to change at Paddington for services into the central section of the route, and customers from Shenfield into London will need to change at Liverpool Street. Services from Reading, Heathrow and Shenfield will connect with the central tunnels in autumn when frequencies will also be increased to 22 trains per hour in the peak between Paddington and Whitechapel.
Customers will be able to plan their journeys on the Elizabeth line using the TfL Go app and Journey Planner ahead of the railway opening. The new railway will connect stations such as Paddington to Canary Wharf in only 17 minutes, transforming how Londoners and visitors navigate the capital. This journey currently takes more than 30 minutes to complete using the Tube.
All Elizabeth line stations will be staffed from first to the last train, with a ‘turn up and go’ service offered to anyone needing assistance. Step-free access is in place from street to train across all Elizabeth line stations between Paddington and Woolwich.
“I am delighted that we can now announce a date for the opening of the Elizabeth line in May,” said Andy Byford, Transport for London’s Commissioner. “We are using these final few weeks to continue to build up reliability on the railway and get the Elizabeth line ready to welcome customers. The opening day is set to be a truly historic moment for the capital and the UK, and we look forward to showcasing a simply stunning addition to our network.”
Work is ongoing at Bond Street Elizabeth line station, which means that it will not open with the other stations on 24 May. The station continues to make good progress and the team at Bond Street are working hard to open the station to customers later this year.
Changes will be made to 14 bus routes to improve links to Elizabeth line stations in east and south-east London, where many customers will use buses to get to and from stations. The changes will take effect from Saturday 14 and Saturday 21 May. This includes the new route 304, which will operate between Manor Park and Custom House stations from 21 May.