The London Underground is undergoing a major modernisation programme, with billions of pounds being invested to upgrade or replace major stations, trains, tracks and signalling to provide more capacity, and deliver more frequent, reliable and accessible services for a growing London.
Already improvements in signalling have resulted in significant reduction in travelling times, and allowed more frequent trains. New signalling has slashed journey times on the northern line by 18%, and more frequent trains enables an extra 11,000 passengers per hour to travel at peak times.
Possibly one of the most exciting developments is the introduction of a 24 hour Night Tube service to be launched in September 2015, which will slash journey times on average by 20 minutes, but on some routes may reduce journeys by up to an hour.
The modernisation programme is being driven by a rapid increase in London’s population growth. It is estimated that by 2031, there will be 1.8m more people living and working in London – the equivalent of a whole extra tube train full of people every three days, according to Transport for London.
The London Underground is 150 years old, making it the worlds oldest. Whilst is is still considered the worlds safest, much of the equipment, systems and infrastructure is well beyond its their expected design life, according to Transport to London.
The modernisation project has been partly funded by surplus fare and commercial revenue, which has been possible as the day-to-day cost of operating and maintaining the London tube has been fully funded by fares and commercial revenue since since 2011/2012.
The modernisation project expects to deliver considerable cost savings, with an ambitious target of £5.6 billion is saved operations and maintenance costs, and a £2.5 billion capital saving by 2020/2021.
Read the full report on London Undergrounds modernisation programme – Fit for the Future