Quick scan through the July 13th TfL Finance Committee meeting (prop. Daniel Moylan, who props the whole place these days, it seems).  The Project Approvals document is our usual check-in, to check on projects going down/up/in/out of TfL’s roadmap.  What do we have here?

UIP8702 – Thameslink

Thameslink 2000 2012 whenever is not a TfL project, although I’m inclined to think it would be better if it were.  Regional considerations in Bedfordshire and Brighton (both opposed to letting Ken get hold of outer-suburban or semi-fast services) nixed that, leaving the odd situation of Crossrail being TfL while the ostensibly similar in scope Thameslink is being delivered by Network Rail and the DfT.  This doesn’t mean, however, TfL aren’t involved, they’re on the hook for £46.48m of financial authority, of which £32.04m has been granted so far, up £11m or so from the previous amount.  However, this is all reclaimable from Network Rail, as one would expect.  This is essentially dealing with all the interfaces, PFI, infrastructure protection stuff incurred by LU as a result of NR digging the place up.

ST-PJ202 – A406 Henlys Corner

This is a small scheme to try and make some sense of the A406 at Henlys Corner which as any fool (Brian Coleman) knows was originally earmarked for grade separation, before this was canned early on in the life of TfL.  They’re now just remodelling the middle bit of the junction, and the cost’s gone up a bit from £7.58m to £8.36m.  Roads, eh?  This is another of the billions of things that count as ‘smoothing traffic flow’, by the way.

Apart from that we have the usual early warning of big stuff coming down the pike.  Here’s the £100m+ pile:

London Underground

  • Bank Congestion Relief – a massive £600m project stretching out past 2017/18 – currently £7.1m is approved
  • SSR Upgrade – Overarching project authority confirmation – £4.2bn for this. Notable that the ancient 1926 Edgware Road ‘K’ frame is being trotted out as part of a TfL/Mayoral PR blitz to put the bite on Phil ‘Slasher’ Hammond come the CSR
  • SSR Upgrade – Signalling – no price on this yet, you’ll recall the original contract was scrapped when Metronet was taken in house, and still hasn’t been relet.  This is getting a bit urgent, not least since it’s a really good idea to use the same system on the Piccadilly, too, since it shares tracks with the Met and District.
  • Tottenham Court Road Congestion Relief – £523.7m on this, which is related but not part of Crossrail.  A fair bit of the TCR works currently under way are for the Tube station, not Crossrail.  Big job.
  • Major Power Works (SSL) – the new S-stock trains use higher voltage supplies, use regen braking and have things like aircon and different traction motor characteristics, all of which requires upgrades to the electricity supply.  £596m to you, guv.
  • Croxley Rail Link – this is still in despite being a fairly unlikely candidate to be taken forward at the moment.  A lot of the support for it came from bodies due to be scrapped, let alone the DfT’s funding cuts.  Still, TfL have approved £0.5m for it, against an estimated turnout cost of £172m

Notably missing from that (it was in June’s list) is the £800m for the Northern Line extension to Battersea.

Surface Transport

  • Cycle Hire (extension of existing scheme) – £87.1m is quoted as the current project authority, but the Final Cost and estimated authority sought are both ‘commercially confidential’, although evidently over £100m given where they sit in the programme.  It’s probable, therefore, that Boris will be announcing some expansion of the scheme sooner rather than later, possibly at the full launch.  Whenever that is.  I’d put money on Canary Wharf being in there.

Those are the biggies.  Of the smaller projects of interest:

  • A406 Bounds Green – estimated to come in at £56.1m, below target of £69m
  • East London Line 2b – estimated to come in at £53.6m, below target of £75m.  No excuse not to build Surrey Canal Road, then.
  • Electric Vehicles – now at £27.4m, which seems rather a lot.  Was £20m in February.
  • Scoot Deployment – this is farting about with traffic lights, and comes in at a hefty £45.3m estimated final cost
  • Cycle Superhighways – £42.5m for the first two routes, out of £145m for ten.  However, Adam Bienkov’s of the opinion that the real cost is £168m, plus TfL is now saying there are twelve routes on the drawing board.

Finally, and unusually, there’s a list of closed projects with the final cost shown against the authority available – note that there’s always contingency built in, so coming in under budget is what you’d expect if everything goes right:

  • Oxford Circus modernisation – £85.3m (this is the Tube station, not the diamond crossing!)
  • White City – £142.6m, slightly over budget
  • Kings Cross CTRL – the new St. Pancras works, came in well under, £883m out of £935.7m.
  • West Ham Bus Garage – £51.7m, slightly under.  Recently opened by Boris, shamelessly trying to claim it for his threadbare ‘green’ credentials, since it’s been planned since 2006
  • DLR 3-car extension – £238.5m, well under the planned £303.2m
  • East London Line extension – £993.4, against £1044.3m planned
  • Stratford International DLR – £181m, against £188.9m planned

What’s obvious there is that Boris is now on the downward slope as regards opening legacy projects – he’s had 3-car DLR, ELLX, Class 378s on Overground, 2009 Tube stock on the Victoria, DLR to Woolwich and the White City developments, none of which he had much to do with beyond cutting the ribbon, and he’s now reduced to opening bus garages and slightly narrowed High Streets.  Still to come we have the DLR to Stratford International, the entry of S-stock into service, the Hangar Lane bridges, the A406 at Bounds Green and the increasingly out-of-its-time vanity Borismaster.  It’ll be interesting to see how much the Victoria and Jubilee signalling upgrades are celebrated.  The pipeline is awfully trickly after that, though.

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