The Transport Minister has confirmed that “short term” investment of £350 million will be made to the Mayor of London for Crossrail.
In a written statement to Parliament, Jo Johnson said that the funding is “an interim measure” and can be used by Sadiq Khan for the 2018/19 year.
It is, the Transport Minister revealed, to “ensure that full momentum is maintained behind Crossrail.”
It comes after the opening of the Elizabeth line was put back by nine months and there has been much speculation about the financial state of Transport for London (TfL), and of the impact of these delays.
An urgent Board meeting has just been held by TfL during which Crossrail was the only item on the agenda.
It led the London Assembly to call for greater transparency, given that the meeting was held in secret, but it does make one wonder why the meetings are clandestine and out of the public domain.
The Transport Minister confirmed that discussions between TfL and the government are underway regarding how additional funding will be provided, because London – as the primary beneficiary of Crossrail – will bear the additional costs via a financing arrangement.
It is why the short term loan has been provided; however, Mr Johnson also pointed out that benefits are being delivered already.
He said: “This project is already delivering benefits for the whole of the UK through its cross-country supply chain and its UK built train fleet.
“When open, Crossrail will be transformative and carry up to 200 million passengers a year, delivering £42 billion of investment into the UK economy.”
The written statement also confirmed that the Department for Transport (DfT) and TfL have commissioned an independent review of the governance of Crossrail.
Meanwhile, a separate review on the project’s finance and commercial position will also be undertaken, with further updates expected once discussions on financing arrangements have concluded.