In 2015 Crossrail 2 created and consulted on initial proposals to make Wimbledon station a main hub on the new CR2 network connecting South West London to North London. The proposed new north-south line across London was described by the national infrastructure commission in 2016 as a national priority and TfL were tasked to lead on this. These proposals incorporated safeguarding various sites in the area. The proposals for Wimbledon that were consulted on in 2015 can be viewed here and supplementary information here. Following extensive consultation over the next four years the proposals were further developed, but not formally published.
In November 2020, The Department of Transport asked TfL to “bring an orderly end to consultancy work as soon as possible”.
CR2 issued a statement following on from this.
“As such, work on progressing Crossrail 2 towards a Hybrid Bill is being paused. The project team have already spent several months ‘making good’ the scheme (finishing key pieces of work and digitising all records) ahead of it being paused, and this work is now almost complete. We will work to help the SoS refresh the safeguarding directions in order to safeguard the scheme’s route from future developments. We await DfT clarification on the timetable for this work. We will also continue to work with stakeholders with developments affected by our safeguarding so that we can protect the route until such time as we can gain powers and start construction.
Given TfL’s current finances and the requirement for us to pay for half of the scheme, we are not in a position to confirm when our Hybrid Bill work can restart. The Mayor has confirmed that Crossrail 2 will still be needed to support London’s growth. We have clearly demonstrated the case for the scheme but need to be in a position to afford to help pay for it.”
As it is clear that Crossrail2 is unlikely to be back on the agenda for many years, Love Wimbledon BID is very concerned by the potential development blight caused by these restrictions remaining in place. Also as part of the proposed scheme Wimbledon was to have a new state-of-the-art station to respond to the congestion of the interchange and to give Wimbledon, a station that can reflect its international reputation.
Continue to get the business voice heard
Love Wimbledon is asking for the safeguarding restrictions to be updated to take into account the revised scheme, to be understanding of future investment opportunities that may be deterred due to the safeguarding, restricting the development of the town. We are also requesting a fresh view is taken on how the station can be developed. Investment into the town cannot be put on hold because of the stalling of the CR2 project.