The new trains which will run on Crossrail – the Elizabeth Line – have entered service in East London.
The line will begin to open in December 2018. The trains now in service are part of a fleet of 66 that will operate on the new line, is now operating in passenger service between Liverpool Street and Shenfield on the TfL Rail route.
Eleven trains will be introduced on the route by the autumn and will initially be 160 metres long and made up of seven carriages. They will later be extended to nine carriages and the full length of 200 metres to carry up to 1,500 people.
The trains have air-conditioning, walk-through carriages, intelligent lighting and temperature control, CCTV, three sets of double doors per carriage, improved travel information, and lightweight materials and regenerative braking that will use up to 30 per cent less energy than older trains.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I’m delighted that our first state-of-the-art Elizabeth line train has entered service on the TfL Rail service. It gives Londoners a first look at a new service that will transform travel across London and the south east when the line opens. The Crossrail programme remains on time and on budget, and the huge success of this project shows how vital it is for the whole of the country that we also push ahead with Crossrail 2.”
Paul Maynard, Transport Minister, said: “We are delivering the biggest rail modernisation programme for over a century and these new trains will transform the way people travel across London and beyond. Our multi-billion pound investment in the Elizabeth line will bring better and faster journeys, while boosting jobs and driving economic growth. This investment reflects our commitment, and that of train operators, to put passengers at the heart of everything we do and will improve journeys and target congestion.”
The trains are being built at Bombardier Transportation’s UK site, showcasing British design and manufacture and helping to support 760 UK jobs and 80 apprenticeships in Derby.
The Elizabeth line will serve the West End, the City and Docklands and run from Reading and Heathrow in the west across to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east, through 40 accessible stations. When fully open in 2019, the Elizabeth line will increase central London’s rail capacity by ten per cent, carrying over half a million passengers per day. It will help TfL to keep pace with London’s growing population, which is set to rise from 8.6 million today to around 10 million by 2030. It will also boost the economy by billions of pounds and support several thousands of new jobs and homes.
Construction of the Crossrail project, which TfL say is on time and on budget, is 85 per cent complete. The Elizabeth line will open in phases, from now with the first new train in passenger service between Liverpool Street and Shenfield on the TfL Rail route.
In May 2018 TfL Rail will go in to service between Paddington and Heathrow Terminal 4, replacing the existing Heathrow Connect service and part of the Great Western inner suburban service. Then in December 2018 The Elizabeth line will open between Paddington and Abbey Wood, Liverpool Street to Shenfield, and Paddington to Heathrow Terminal 4, with the through service from Shenfield to Paddington opening in May 2019.
The Elizabeth line will fully open, extending to Reading and Heathrow Terminal 4, in December 2019.