TFL RESPONSE TO CROSSRAIL 2 CONSULTATION EMPHASISES SIGNIFICANT BENEFITS OF NEW STATION IN CHELSEA

On 7 July 2016 Transport for London (TfL) published its response to the key issues raised in the Crossrail 2 consultation which was held between 27 October 2015 and 8 January 2016.

A full copy of the response can be viewed at the link below:
https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk/crossrail2/october2015/user_uploads/rtir.pdf

There is a chapter (pp. 47 – 51) that focuses specifically on the proposed station on the King’s Road Chelsea. The report states at p. 47:

“The currently proposed alignment [at the King’s Road] strikes a balance between relieving existing London Underground and National Rail services and serving those areas that will require additional transport capacity in the 2030s.

“A Crossrail 2 station in Chelsea would improve community access to rail-based public transport in an area where current service levels are low in comparison to similar inner London locations. It would also improve connectivity to the Royal Brompton and Royal Marsden hospitals and provide access to the existing retail and commercial developments along King’s Road.”

TfL’s interim response makes a number of key points relating to the proposed station in Chelsea which directly addresses many of the concerns raised during the consultation and will provide reassurance to local people. These include:

  • The King’s Road will not be closed during construction – CR2 confirmed the King’s Road would not be closed during the construction of CR2.
  • Imperial Wharf is not a viable option – The report states a Crossrail 2 station at Imperial Wharf has been considered but analysis found that the case for the King’s Road is stronger.
  • A new station would improve access to an area which is underserved by public transport – The report acknowledges a Crossrail 2 station in Chelsea would improve community access to rail-based public transport in an area where current service levels are low in comparison to similar inner London locations and that the area will require additional transport capacity by the 2030s.
  • A new station on the King’s Road would ease overcrowding at existing stations – A Crossrail 2 station in Chelsea would reduce crowding at Sloane Square and South Kensington, as well as improve access to rail services in an area where it is currently poor compared to similar inner London locations.  It would also improve connections to the Royal Brompton and Royal Marsden hospitals and provide access to shops and businesses on the King’s Road. King’s Road itself is already congested, slowing down buses; with growth it will get worse. A Crossrail 2 station here will help relieve this pressure.
  • Crossrail 2 is already looking at ways to minimise disruption during construction – CR2 believe they are able to remove the site C worksite (north side of King’s Road) from the proposals. This would preserve shops and residential properties located within 140-142 King’s Road, reduce the disruption on the neighbouring residential properties and reduce construction traffic on the King’s Road.
  • Crossrail 2 is working closely with RBKC to preserve and enhance Chelsea’s character – CR2 are working closely with RBKC to identify possible impacts on the local community. An environmental statement will detail likely impacts and benefits to the natural, built and social environment and will be published when the application for powers is made. This is currently expected in 2019.
  • Impact on hospitals – the report states CR2 are working with the Brompton Hospital NHS Trust to discuss a way in which both schemes can be progressed with minimal disruption and are confident a solution will be found.

Speaking on behalf of the supportive campaign, Emily Candler, Executive Director at Discover South Kensington said:

“We are pleased that, as demonstrated in this response, TfL clearly shares our view that a new station on the King’s Road will have a hugely beneficial impact for those who work in this area, as well as enhancing transport links for its residents and visitors in an area which is currently poorly served by rail. 45,000 people work within a kilometre of the proposed site at Kings Road. These people live all over London and the South East. They are teachers, nurses, museum assistants, catering staff – core staff that keep an area going. This investment will open up new commuting routes linking homes to jobs.

“We hope that TfL’s response, which positively addresses many of the concerns expressed during the consultation, will be welcomed by all those who live, work, visit or study here, and all who are keen to see this amazing area of London continue to thrive.”

Cllr Robert Atkinson, Leader of the Labour Group, Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea said:

“This response will undoubtedly be hugely reassuring for local residents and businesses in Kensington & Chelsea. It makes clear what supporters of the proposals have been saying for many years, that a new station on the King’s Road will significantly benefit thousands of ordinary people who live, work or visit Chelsea.

“Contrary to local scaremongering, Crossrail 2 has committed to keeping the King’s Road open during construction and has emphasised the real need to increase public transport capacity in Chelsea by 2030. With these issues now addressed, I would hope many more local people now feel able to support the station.”