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London's new 'super tube', which will form part of the new Elizabeth line, is set to open next year. Watch below:
First things first, the new train line won't be part of the London Underground. It will instead go through Central London via the Crossrail route, which was the original name for the Elizabeth line.
Images of the new line are absolutely stunning, and are a massive upgrade on the current services available.
It's not just aesthetically pleasing; it will make reduce the length of the journey from Canary Wharf to Heathrow to just 38 minutes, an improvement on the minimum one hour it takes via the current underground system.
New trains will be capable of carrying 1,500 passengers at up to a whopping 90mph.
There will also be 450 seats for passengers who are lucky enough to get one.
Passengers will speed through the streets of central London, serving Docklands and the City of London financial districts, the shopping and theatre hub of the West End and Heathrow, as well as commuter belt towns in Essex, Kent and the Thames Valley on either side of the city.
The modern 62-mile network will utilise brand-new 26-mile tunnels through London.
The twin tunnels – 20 feet in diameter and up to 40 meters (130 feet) deep – took three years to dig out between 2012 and 2015, using eight 1,000-ton tunnel boring machines (TBMs), reports CNN.
Andy Byford, London's Transport Commissioner, said at a February 2022 media preview: "Crossrail will be a massive fillip to London's morale and confidence when it opens. When people arrive on day one they will be blown away by the scale and how quiet and smooth the train ride is."
However, there has been some controversy with regards to how much the project will cost, with reports coming out at £19 billion ($25 billion) plus.
Rail journalist Christian Wolmar explained: “Many people, myself included, are sceptical of mega-projects. There are reputable criticisms to be leveled at Crossrail, and a few awkward inquiries to ask.
"The authentic finances was evidently unrealistic and one may additionally argue that London has been very lucky to accumulate such a splendid new railway when so little is spent on transport in the remainder of the UK areas compared with the capital.
“Despite the disruption caused in some sensitive areas such as the City and Mayfair, much of the work drew little criticism. In a way, the most remarkable aspect of the Crossrail project has been its invisibility.”
Wolmar adds: “Despite the caveats, there is no doubt that Crossrail is an amazing scheme, grand in conception and set to become as iconic for London as its red buses, the Tube or Nelson’s Column.”
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