Crossrail 2 plans updated as TfL target London Underground stations for interchange routes

Employees stand in a tunnel at the Stepney Green interchange, developed by Crossrail, as it runs beneath London
-Credit: (Image: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Officials are updating parts of the plan to roll out Transport for London's (TfL) north-south successor to the Elizabeth line. Crossrail 2 is expected to stretch from Epsom in the south to Broxbourne to the north.

Bosses have imposed 'Limits of Land Subject to Consultation', also known as 'Safeguarding Limits' on sections of land on the proposed route of the railway. But, in some areas - known as 'Areas of Surface Interest' - development planning that does not involve any building, engineering or other operation deeper than three metres below existing ground level, and does not involve either an increase in the planned floor space or an increase in the height of an existing building is permitted.

Now, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has told the London Assembly that these are set to be updated for the middle of the proposed route to reflect an updated design. Discussions between TfL and the Government were due to take place in May.

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A map of Crossrail 2's potential route denoted by parallel purple lines with other colours signifying different legs
The potential route for Crossrail 2 -Credit:TfL

Mr Khan said on May 29: "Since the funding settlement letter of October 2020, Transport for London (TfL) has continued to engage with the Department for Transport (DfT) on updating the 2015 Safeguarding Directions for Crossrail 2. The DfT [Department for Transport] has indicated it will assist in updating the directions for the central section of the proposed route.

"This is subject to TfL agreeing statutory blight payments [for when the value or enjoyment of property is reduced by proposals for large scale public works] and the necessary programme for lifting the existing directions and replacing them with new directions to reflect the current Crossrail 2 scheme design. Further discussions between TfL and DfT are planned to take place in May."

You can view the Crossrail 2 safeguarding regulations in full here.

TfL not aware of 'additional station'

In March, TfL responded to a query asking if there were plans for an 'additional station'. Paperwork reportedly indicated a stop that was 'not in any prior consultation documents', in-between Meridian Water and Ponders End, around the area of Picketts Lock.

A freedom of information case officer responded: "We are not aware of a proposed additional station on the Crossrail 2 alignment in the Picketts Lock area. At present there is no scheme development work on Crossrail 2 being undertaken.

(L-R) Managing Director of MTR Elizabeth Line, Nigel Holness, London's mayor, Sadiq Khan, and Transport for London Commissioner, Andy Byford, during the opening day of the new Elizabeth Line railway at Bond Street
Sadiq Khan says TfL needs to arrange blight payments -Credit:Isabel Infantes/Getty Images

"In October 2020, as part of the Transport for London Funding Agreement with the Department for Transport, a decision was made to pause further work on the design and development of Crossrail 2. The work undertaken so far is fully documented.

"Transport for London continues to manage the 2015 Crossrail 2 Safeguarding Directions on behalf of the Secretary of State for Transport and continues to work with stakeholders whose developments are affected by the Safeguarding. This is to ensure we can continue to protect the route until such time as the railway can be progressed."

Route to 'target' certain stations

Documents from a meeting of TfL's programmes and investment committee, held on February 28, described the status of the railway line, which could stretch from Epsom in the south to Broxbourne to the north. Officials also described the thinking behind current plans.

The build would 'target', for example, most 'crowded' stations and lines on London Underground and National Rail networks. These include 'important interchange locations'. Papers added that land is being watched over in case of any building that could block the project.

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