The future Elizabeth line station at Paddington has been formally handed over to TfL as part of the process of familiarising staff with their new stations.

Built below ground adjacent to the 19th-century main station building, the new Elizabeth line station has a 120-metre-long entrance canopy on Eastbourne Terrace, it extends four levels below Eastbourne Terrace and Departures Road with entrances via a newly pedestrianised public area that connects to the existing mainline station.

TfL will be responsible for the station as the Infrastructure Manager and the contractor, Costain Skanska Joint Venture, will continue demobilisation from the site.

This is the sixth of the Elizabeth line stations to be transferred over to TfL, following Custom House, Farringdon, Tottenham Court Road, Woolwich and Liverpool Street stations, which leaves only Canary Wharf, Whitechapel and the late running Bond Street to go.

Paddington station intermediate level (c) Crossrail

When the line opens, London Underground will be responsible for the management of Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street and Whitechapel Elizabeth line stations. MTR Elizabeth Line, on behalf of Rail for London will be responsible for Custom House, Paddington, Canary Wharf, Custom House and Woolwich Elizabeth line stations.

Paddington station platform level (c) Crossrail

Delivery of the Elizabeth line is in its final stages, and the number of trains operating in the tunnels has increased from four trains per hour in May to eight trains per hour in June and reached 12 trains per hour on 12th July. This will be the initial level of service on the Elizabeth line when it enters passenger service in the first half of 2022.

Crossrail will also be trialling 24 trains per hour later this summer. These train movements are critical for increasing mileage across the network, supporting reliability growth of the railway and flushing out any issues with the systems and signalling software.

Trial Operations will commence later this year and is the final phase of testing to ensure the safety and reliability of the railway for public use. This includes real-time testing of more than 150 scenarios including evacuations of trains and stations before opening the Elizabeth line.

When the line opens next year, people coming in from the east via Canary Wharf will use the new station, while services coming in from the west will continue to use the mainline station.

Later next year, it’s planned that all services will use the new platforms, with a slightly better service for the Abbey Wood branch than the Shenfield branch, and then the whole lot is linked up in early 2023.

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11 comments
  1. LOSERVILLAIN says:

    Pity that only the East gets to go through the core section. But atleast you can still change…
    I still think they will have to open without Bond Street, just like Westminster was closed on the JLE in 1999

    • Betterbee says:

      Apparently the line can’t open with Bond St because it is necessary to be able to use it as an evacuation route in case of emergency – see https://variably.uk/2021/08/09/crossrails-trial-operations-conundrum/.

    • ianVisits says:

      That article is wrong – they decoupled the station from the rest of the line in terms of opening issues last year.

    • Betterbee says:

      Right – “Bond Street is another story. The station must hit SC2 [Trial Running], which means it can be used as an evacuation point, or it will delay the route. But [Crossrail boss Mark] Wild says it will not reach that stage until early autumn. Whether it hits SC3 – the point at which it could be commissioned into use – in time for it to open with the rest of the route will largely depend on how early into next year the rest of the line is ready to go, he says” (source: https://www.building.co.uk/features/mark-wild-interview-why-crossrail-will-be-worth-the-wait/5111940.article) – so partially decoupled, which is what in fact the article I linked to says.

      So that article is correct, but my summary of it wasn’t in that I conflated evacuation readiness (required for Crossrail’s opening) with full operational readiness (not so required). Apologies.

  2. Melvyn says:

    Crossrail is described as a fully accessible line which it is if you are simply joining or leaving from street level but at Paddington Station the inner circle platform ( that takes one back!) under Prade Street remains inaccessible just like the westbound circle line platform at Liverpool Street Station . Although at Paddington there is the option to board a train terminating at Edgware Road and then stay on it when it returns ensuring its correct line re Circle/ District Lines !

    All the money spent on Crossrail yet these gaps left in accessibility left !

    • Eds says:

      Same can be done at Liverpool Street. You can take the eastbound met line to Aldgate (ramp available to platform) which is one stop and where it terminates, remain on train to return to Liverpool St westbound where you are able to connect with the circle line.

  3. Eds says:

    Same can be done at Liverpool Street. You can take the eastbound met line to Aldgate (ramp available to platform) which is one stop and where it terminates, remain on train to return to Liverpool St westbound where you are able to connect with the circle line.

  4. Geoff says:

    An actual plan of the station in relation to Paddington main line would be useful to look at.
    Looks like a long walk to the Hammersmith and City line with no direct connection?

    • ianVisits says:

      It’s comparable to say, someone arriving on Platform 1 in the mainline today who also needs to walk to the H&C platforms.

      (naturally, anyone in that situation probably catches the Circle line to Edgware Road or the Bakerloo to Baker Street and swaps lines)

  5. Paul D. says:

    I’m no expert on railways, just a passenger. I live near the Romford Upminster branch line and always choose the C2C trains from Upminster to travel into London, the reason: they are comfortable. Elizabeth line trains have seats like boards and the suspension seems to transmit every bump on the track straight into my bony bum. I did think someone might make a killing hiring out cushions to passengers but they would need a hell of a lot! As Elizabeth line stations at places like Tottenham Court Road do seem to be quite deep, ie under all existing Tube lines I wondered how long it takes to exit one of these stations and might it be quicker in the long run to use a Tube line?

    • Sinan A says:

      Paul I am completely with you. After £20bn probably the taxpayer deserves better comfort. Seats are like plywood. Armrests seem to be designed for monks to enable them to suffer. It is inline with the suffering brought on by TFL policies recently for road users. No pain no gain. Thanks TFL 🙂

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