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Watford Tube link gets the go-ahead

A scheme to connect part of the London Underground network with local rail services is finally set to go ahead – at more than twice its original cost.

The Croxley rail link was originally priced in 2002 and came in at just £60 million.

Now Hertfordshire County Council has received approval for the £145 million Metropolitan Line extension to Watford via Watford High Street from the East of England Regional Assembly.

The council’s head of transport programmes and strategy, Mike Younghusband, said: “Construction costs have inflated and the Government now takes a different approach to risk.

“By taking on the project we’re agreeing to delivering the scheme on budget, whereas before if costs went up the Government would just fund it.”

The regional assembly will contribute £119.5 million to the cost of the job, which involves building a viaduct to connect the existing Metropolitan Line to the disused Croxley Green Branch line. Included in the price is a £13.8 million risk.

The job is awaiting programme entry status from the Department for Transport and once this is achieved it is expected the link would take a minimum of five-and-a-half years to cover a full consultation programme.

But the council admits it could take up to seven years.

Mr Younghusband said: “We’re looking at a construction window from 2012 to 2014 and we’re hoping to get early contractor involvement for the civil engineering elements of the job.”

It is expected the project will be delivered through a hybrid procurement process.

The council will look after the civil engineering part and London Underground the rail elements.

LU will procure the job through a combination of its framework contracts and PPP. The project is a top priority for Hertfordshire County Council as it links in with the £1 billion health campus being built in west Watford.


Winter 2008 - Programme entry status confirmed

Spring 2009 – Pre transport and works act application


September 2009 - Submit TWA

February 2010 - Public inquiry

September 2010 - Secretary of state approval

September 2011 – ECI phase 1 contract award

April 2012 – ECI phase 2 contract award

January 2014 - Completion

To download a map of the route click on the resource box on the right hand side of the page.

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