London Crossrail due to come in £600m over budget

The cost of the London Crossrail project has increased by about £600m, from £14.8bn to £15.4bn, according to UK rail minister Jo Johnson.

The revised cost estimate was given in the annual update, published this week by the Department for Transport.

The project is now 93% complete and is entering the testing and commissioning stage, Johnson said.

"The new railway will transform travel in, to, and across London, with the positive economic benefits being felt across the country," he said. "Its legacy will continue to support many thousands of jobs, over 1,000 apprenticeships and a supply chain that is spread across the length and breadth of the UK."

Transport for London’s map of the Elizabeth Line

The revised cost for the project is actually less than the original estimates of £15.9bn in 2007 and the 2009 estimate of £17.8bn, which was then value engineered down to £14.8bn in the wake of the financial crisis.

Johnson said £300m of the additional funding had already been provided by the Department for Transport (DfT) and Transport for London. An additional £290m will be provided by DfT and Network Rail to carry out upgrade works on the national network.

The main 100km Crossrail network is scheduled to open in December 2018 – if all goes to plan – when it is estimated that it will increase London’s rail capacity by 10%.

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