This week saw the official opening of the Elizabeth line, an occasion so long-awaited that even the Queen visited last week to mark the completion of the £20 billion rail link, which will transform cross-London travel.
The Elizabeth Line, formerly referred to as Crossrail, will bring 1.5 million people within a 45-minute journey of central London, revolutionising travel across the capital and the South-East.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Today is an historic day as the Elizabeth line opens to passengers. This is a huge moment, not just for London but the entire country – particularly in this special Jubilee year.
“This brand new line is the most significant addition to our transport network in decades. It will add billions to our economy and is set to serve up to 200 million passengers each year. I’m sure passengers will enjoy the modern trains, beautiful step-free stations and the reduced journey times across the capital and the South East.
“The Elizabeth line is much more than just a new railway – it will provide a crucial economic boost to the whole country and help to turbo-charge our recovery from the pandemic.”
Dave Roat, Strategy Director at Cubic Transportation Systems, said: “They say ‘good things come to those who wait’, a phrase indicative of the Elizabeth Line, which after several delays is opening today. A game changer for London travel, the project will increase central London rail capacity by 10 percent, reducing congestion in the capital, and creating a more seamless travel experience.
“Covid-19 prompted seismic changes in the way we live, work and travel. No longer dependent on being in the capital, Londoners bought more than 112,000 homes outside of the city in 2021, seeking more space to comfortably work from home. With an increasing number of companies now expecting workers into the office a few days a week, Crossrail has provided the infrastructure for people to travel in and out of London with ease, bringing 1.5 million people within a 45-minute journey of central London. Providing an integrated, seamless travel experience and modern fare collection system, the project will help drive the economy both in and outside the capital, while providing a framework for future growth and innovation within transport.”