Thursday, 30 June 2011

Transport-Orbital Rail


Members of the Brent Cross Coalition have urged Mayor Boris Johnson to direct 'planning gain' money from the huge north and west London redevelopment areas to spending on light-rail instead of roads.

This would share the existing hardly-used freight line corridors that join Park Royal/Wembley to Brent Cross, Colindale and West Hampstead, and the old railway trackbed to Mill Hill East.

(The map here was originally published in Transport for London's 'Transport 2025' document.)


Below is a London Development Agency (RIP) map of north London development areas. There is no fast and reliable east-west travel in these outer London boroughs. The lack of an orbital, east-west railway in outer north London can be clearly seen:



To the west of the boroughs in the LDA area above, this Brent Council map below shows Brent Cross in the east, and a possible 'North and West London Light Railway' (here called the 'Brent Cross Railway'). Most of the possible light-rail extensions beyond Brent itself are not shown.



The Brent Cross developers have dismissed attempts to reopen the freight line across Brent and into Ealing for passengers, even though their own map below shows that rail access from the west to Brent Cross (it shows origins of journeys in red) is non-existent. This implies road access only, and lots of road congestion!


Below shows the Brent Cross area, the freight line to the west, and the current lack of orbital railway across Barnet:



A leaflet being distributed in Barnet is show below. (Light-rail routes beyond Brent Cross have not been endorsed by the Brent Cross Coalition.)

(You may need to download and install the free font called London Tube for best results)


Click below for a discussion of possible light rail routes across the Brent Cross site:


An essay by pundit Christian Wolmar is below:


A critique of the whole Brent Cross plan is here:


A study for a possible 'Phase One' (since modified across the Brent Cross site) is described below.

(A different 'Phase One', from Brent Cross Northern Line station, via the shopping centre, to either Hendon or Cricklewood Thameslink stations, would perhaps be more likely.)


March 2011: The two light-rail western terminuses have to be in doubt, unfortunately. 

Firstly, the proposed Central Line platforms at Park Royal (Piccadilly Line) station have been abandoned, due to the commercial failure (so far) of the Diageo First Central business park.

Secondly, making Ealing Broadway a light-rail terminus would reduce the capacity of that station to handle Great Western Line trains that were terminating there, when Paddington was closed (for whatever reason). On the other hand, Crossrail is almost independent of the Paddington main-line terminus, so the likelihood of complete closure of the route east of Ealing Broadway will decline.

A convenient alternative western terminus for the light-rail service is the proposed 'Old Oak Common' Crossrail and High-Speed-Two station, shown here, which would give excellent new connections from stations on the light-rail line:

Click to enlarge

One (perhaps unlikely) possibility for a rail system is to use "tram-trains", as featured below:
Link to 'lrta' web site

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