Although the Bakerloo line extension project is on hold at the moment, TfL is still carrying out some work on protecting the alignment and has awarded a contract to carry out feasibility studies for five packages of tunnelling works.
The contract was awarded to the engineering consultancies, Dr. Sauer & Partners and Arup to prepare feasibility studies for five packages of tunnelling works on the proposed Bakerloo Line extension at four specific locations on the extension.
The engineering studies are for works that would be needed at Lambeth North, Elephant & Castle, Lewisham station and Lewisham Way shaft, and for one further package looking at the route-wide construction of cross-passages between the two running tunnels.
The Bakerloo line extension, when eventually built, will see the Bakerloo line diverted from its current terminus at Elephant and Castle to a new station to be built next to the new Northern line platforms at Elephant and Castle. From there it will run under the Old Kent Road, with two new stations along the line, to a new station at New Cross Gate for an interchange with the London Overground and Southern rail, and then to Lewisham for the DLR and Southeastern services.
Although the project was put on hold during the pandemic, it’s not officially cancelled, just delayed.
A TfL spokesperson said: “Last year, directions were issued by the Transport Secretary to safeguard the route of the Bakerloo line extension from Lambeth North to Lewisham. These directions will prevent premature development on sites required for this vital project.
“Extending the Bakerloo line and upgrading the existing line would connect an historically underserved part of London to the Tube network, while unlocking thousands of new homes that London needs and supporting new jobs.
“We remain committed to delivering the scheme when the time is right but are dependent on securing additional Government funding to do this. We recently awarded a contract to Dr Sauer & Partners to confirm elements of the tunnel design, which will enable us to further develop the proposed scheme and to have constructive discussions with potential developers along the route.”
The route was given those safeguarding protections in March 2021 so that councils are required to take the tube line into consideration when awarding planning permissions. That prevents a tall building from being approved if its foundations could affect the tunnels or a surface building from being built on a proposed building site.
Building the Bakerloo line extension will likely be dependent on a mix of local developer funding, council funding as used for the Northern line extension, TfL being able to increase its borrowing against future revenues, and some level of government support for capital projects.