More than 70 leading business figures and and organisations have urged Chancellor Philip Hammond and Transport Secretary Chris Grayling to approve Crossrail 2.
The project would link Cheshunt in Hertfordshire to Epsom in Surrey, passing through Clapham Junction, Victoria and Tottenham Court Road, slashing journey times for tens of thousands of Londoners and supporting the creation of thousands of new homes and jobs necessary to meet the needs of London’s booming population.
Although the project has the backing of all parties at City Hall, business leaders, trade bodies and local councils in neighbouring counties, work cannot begin until and unless ministers and Parliament give their consent.
In a letter released by City Hall today, key figures from major firms including EY, Deloitte, Aviva Group, Gatwick Airport, Heathrow Airport, Canary Wharf Group, and the FSB urge Hammond and Grayling to recognise the benefits of the project which is described “as being of national importance.”
In addition to easing congestion on the capital’s transport network, the new railway is estimated to boost the entire UK’s economy by up to £150bn if given the go-ahead.
Transport for London and firms operating in the capital have already committed to meeting half of the project’s cost, reducing the burden for central government.
Caroline Artis, Senior Partner for London at EY and one of the letter’s signatories, said: “As a major nationwide employer, we rely on good infrastructure to get our employees to work and unlock areas to give them access to better housing.
“Crossrail 2 will allow 270,000 more people to get into central London in the morning peak while also supporting large swathes of housing development.Crossrail 2 is a priority project and it must not be delayed if the UK is to stay on course for a global future outside the EU.”
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said today’s letter “is yet more evidence of just how important Crossrail 2 is to the UK.”
He added: “Business leaders know it will bring hundreds of thousands of jobs and housing, and transport benefits right across the South East, as well as boosting the economy in all corners of the country.
“Despite the project benefiting the whole of the UK, London has actually met half the funding cost. What we now need is for the Government to take note of these benefits and give us the green light to progress, for the good of the entire country.”
The letter from business leaders:
Today, we urge Government to enable rapid progress towards the construction of Crossrail 2, an infrastructure project of national importance.
Crossrail 2 will make a difference to the whole country. Forty per cent of transport benefits will be outside London. Thirty per cent of the housing will be outside of London. Sixty thousand supply chain jobs and apprenticeships will be created across the UK. It will grow the national economy by up to £150 billion. London is already committed to meeting half the cost.
This will ease overcrowding on key rail lines from Portsmouth to Cambridge and will link with High Speed 2 (HS2) at Euston. This will transform journey times and connectivity from the Solent to the Wash, supporting 200,000 new homes and 200,000 jobs.
An already overcrowded regional transport network struggles to get people to work and fails to link them to accessible housing, threatening to stunt growth across the entire nation. Serious bottlenecks at nationally significant stations like Clapham Junction and Waterloo are already intolerable and, without Crossrail 2, the journey time benefits from HS2 will be lost in queueing at Euston.
We need to get people to work. Now is the moment for Government to find the Parliamentary time and show the world UK is open for business post Brexit.
Simon Pitkeathley, Chief Executive Camden Town Unlimited, Euston Town and Camden Collective
Alasdair Reisner, Chief Executive Civil Engineering Contractors Association
Geoff French, Chair Enterprise M3 LEP
Stewart Dunn, Chief Executive Hampshire Chamber of Commerce
Louise Punter, Chief Executive Surrey Chamber of Commerce
Denise Rossiter, Chief Executive Essex Chamber of Commerce
Yolanda Rugg, Chief Executive Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce
John Bridge, Chief Executive Cambridgeshire Chamber of Commerce
Sue Terpilowski, Policy Chair FSB London
Sue Towner, Regional Vice Chair FSB Surrey & West Sussex
Colin Stanbridge, Chief Executive London Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Helen Clark Bell, Chief Executive LoveWimbledon
Stewart Wingate, Chief Executive Officer Gatwick Airport Ltd
Andrew Cowan, Chief Executive Officer Stansted Airport
Russ Shaw, Founder TechLondonAdvocates
Paul Harvey, Managing Partner Morrisons Solicitors LLP/Chair – LoveWimbledon BID
Christine Lovett, Chief Executive Angel.London BID
Ruth Duston, Chief Executive Victoria BID, Hatton Gardens BID, Northbank BID, Cheapside BID, Old Street Partnership, The Aldgate Partnership
Miles Celic, Chief Executive Officer TheCityUK
Julian Bird, Chief Executive Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre
Kirsten Henly, Chief Executive Kingston First
Joyce Lorigan, Chair Urban Partners
Bernard Donoghue, Chief Executive Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (ALVA)
Graham Buck, Chairman FSB Bedfordshire Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Region
Sir George Iacobescu CBE, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Canary Wharf Group
Julian David, Chief Executive Officer techUK
Tass Mavrogordato, Chief Executive Bee Midtown and Bee Farringdon & Clerkenwell
Nic Durston, Chief Executive South Bank Employers’ Group and South Bank BID
Ufi Ibrahim, Chief Executive British Hospitality Association
Julian Gatward, Managing Director Taylor Woodrow
Ray O’Rourke KBE, Chairman and Chief Executive Laing O’Rourke
Richard Robinson, Chief Executive, Civil Infrastucture, EMIA AECOM
Andrew Ballheimer, Managing Partner Allen & Overy
Nick Crossfield, Managing Director, UK and Ireland Alstom UK
Sir Adrian Montague, Chairman Aviva Group plc
Nicholas Pollard, Group CEO Cory Riverside Energy
Angus Knowles-Cutler, London Office Managing Partner and U.K. Vice Chairman Deloitte
Ray Newton, Adviser to the Chairman Edwardian Hotels London
Caroline Artis, Senior Partner for London EY
Julian Long, London Managing Partner Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
John Holland-Kaye, Chief Executive Officer Heathrow Airport Limited
George Kessler, Deputy Chairman Kesslers International
John Allan, Chairman London First
Stewart Wingate, Chief Executive Officer London Gatwick Airport
Andrew Cowan, Divisional Chief Executive Officer London Stansted Airport
Tim Blackman, Vice-Chancellor Middlesex University
Di Gowland, Principal and CEO Newham College of Further Education
Richard Foley, Senior Partner Pinsent Masons
Matthew Riley, Managing Director Ramboll UK Limited
Andy Forbes, Principal and Chief Executive The College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London
Tom Miserendino, President and CEO of AEG Europe The O2
Andy Wilson, Chief Executive The WKCIC Group
Nick Taylor, Chief Executive Waterman Group
Roger Fitton, Managing Partner Winckworth Sherwood
Graham Sant, Managing Director, Infrastructure Capita Real Estate and Infrastructure
Jane Glanville, Chief Executive London Higher
Ben Stephenson, Chief Executive We Are Waterloo
Harbinder Birdi, Partner, Head of Infrastructure & Transport Hawkins\Brown Architects
Fraser Brown, Director & Business Lead Heathrow Express
Nigel Bishop, Chief Executive Guild of Travel and Tourism
Frederic Royer, Director Frog Telecom
Stephen Massey, Director SjM Executive Security Consultancy Ltd
Martin Lewis, CEO NCPI Solutions
Michael Walters, Managing Director AHR London
Isabel Fernandez, Manager Wilson Perumal & Company, Inc
Nigel McDonough, Professional Services Partner Vail Williams LLP
Pravin Jugdaohsingh, Senior Solicitor MARSANS Solicitors & Advocates
Dr John Keddie, Deputy Chair/Chair London Stansted Cambridge Consortium/Harlow Enterprise Zone
Shaun Jones, VP Ground Transportation Systems Thales UK
David Whittleton, Deputy Chairman Arup Group
Gary Reeves, Executive Director The Fitzrovia Partnership
Andrew Gould, Deputy Chair /Principal London Stansted Cambridge Consortium/Genr8 Development Ltd