RMT Calls For Decisive Action On Crossrail Two And Bakerloo Line Extension

TRANSPORT UNION RMT today issued a call for decisive political action on Crossrail Two (the project to link North East with South West London) and the extension of the Bakerloo Line beyond Elephant and Castle and into South East London.

The RMT call is timed to coincide with the business lobby setting out their demands for the projects with the union urging that the new routes are designed for the benefits of all Londoners not just the banking and commercial sector.

With transport in London running at full capacity, RMT has also repeated its call today for an end to job cuts in the sector and a recognition that staffing levels have to be maintained and increased to avoid a meltdown in services where demand outstrips supply.

Crossrail Two, running from Wimbledon up into Essex, has been discussed since the 1970’s and untilises some existing underground infrastructure on the District and Central Lines but links up new services through the centre of the capital.

Plans to extend the Bakerloo Line into poorly served areas of South East London date back even further, all the way to the 1940’s, and would provide an important underground connection into an area of growing population which has been neglected by transport planners for far too long.

RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said:

“It is vitally important that we don’t waste more time delaying transport infrastructure developments that would make a massive difference for millions of people, if we don’t crack on now existing services will reach saturation point by the end of this decade with stations closed due to overcrowding and trains rammed full, at peak times we are already in that position right now on many parts of the network.

“It is vitally important that we don’t waste more time delaying transport infrastructure developments that would make a massive difference for millions of people" - Bob Crow

“It is equally important that big-business isn’t allowed to call the shots on the routes and the timescales for these infra-structure developments, they should be built and operated in the interests of all Londoners not just the wealthy elite. By the same token RMT doesn’t want to see these projects dragged down by the revival of the failed PPP/PFI scheme which set back the Underground for the years off the back of political stupidity and the drive for private profit.

“With everyone now clearly recognising that demand for transport services will continue to grow there can be no excuse for pressing on with the cash-led plans to cut station, track, platform and on-train staffing numbers. In fact we are staring at a self-inflicted skills crisis that will compromise new projects and the solution is to maintain and expand staffing levels, while recruiting and training up the future staffing capacity that we will need to take us forward.”

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