Progress continues on plans for the new London Overground line, the West London Orbital.
The route will run from Hounslow to Cricklewood and Hendon via Old Oak, Neasden and Brent Cross, a circular route which will make journeys quicker and easier as passengers will no longer have to travel in and out of central London.
In his Transport Strategy, Mayor Sadiq Khan made the line his top new scheme and committed to work with the West London Alliance, Network Rail and TfL to deliver it.
The potential connections to Thameslink, Crossrail, the future HS2 and others mean that West London will be even better connected to the rest of the UK and, through Heathrow and Eurostar, the world.
The success of the proposal, which should bring to life a long-talked about set of connections, has hinged on the unique political cross-party mandate, with unanimous support, and exceptional value for money. The new line will use largely existing infrastructure, and cost around £300 million to realise.
The potential is massive – the feasibility study work indicates it could unlock around 20,000 new homes in a chain of new and existing communities, and provide space for over 5,000 new jobs, all on over 500 identified sites along the route.
Its identification in the Mayor’s Transport Strategy is also significant in being a commitment from the Greater London Authority.
Further commitments are being made now. It is being embedded in local plans scheduled for adoption in 2021, and will be part of consultations in 2019. TfL (Transport for London) are currently working on further studies and modelling work prior to design work in 2019, and aiming at a works order in 2023.
The West London Orbital will be a key part of the discussion at the Capital West London Growth Summit, when London Deputy Mayor Heidi Alexander, Hounslow Council leader Steve Curran, and others will discuss sub-regional connectivity in one of the main sessions of the conference.