Crossrail 2 – a winning combination

Jo Valentine, chief executive, London First

Last week was a good week for Crossrail 2, the proposed rail line to link south-west and north east London.

First it was recognised by business as London's priority next major infrastructure project, taking the gong for ‘Investment in London’s Future’ at the London Awards.

"Crossrail 2 must do more than making it easier to travel in and around London – it must also provide new homes and jobs across the region."

Then, just two days later, Transport for London announced it had appointed four major consulting groups to help develop more detailed plans for the new line.

The London Awards, which are organised by London First, mark key individuals, activities and projects that have contributed to making London the best city in the world in which to work and play.

While the scheme took the award, those who are getting behind Crossrail 2 – as Mayor Boris Johnson and Chancellor George Osborne have already done –  deserve similar acknowledgement.

The line will bring huge benefits to London, the south east and the UK. It will ensure that London can grow and remain globally competitive, driving growth across the national economy. 

A Manifesto for London.

Wednesday 25th March 2025

High profile speakers at the London Infrastructure Summit include:   

Lord Andrew Adonis, Shadow Infrastructure Minister 
Steve Allen, Managing Director - Finance, Transport for London
Isabel Dedring, Deputy Mayor for Transport, Greater London Authority 
Simon Kirby, Chief Executive, HS2
Andy Mitchell, Chief Executive, Thames Tideway Tunnel
Terry Morgan CBE, Chairman, Crossrail
Tony Travers, Director of LSE London, London School of Economics

A manifesto for London - booking details are found here

Crossrail 2 will play a vital role in supporting London’s growth by adding 10 per cent more rail capacity by 2030 – just as Crossrail 1 is doing for London by 2020.

Addressing future capacity needs now is crucial. While the city is set to break population records any day now - passing its pre-war peak of 8.6m -  that pales in comparison to the 10m people estimated to be calling themselves Londoners by 2036.

The size of the task is staggering: the Mayor’s 2050 Infrastructure Plan identified an increase of more than 50 per cent in trips by public transport to accommodate growth across the city.

But Crossrail 2 must do more than making it easier to travel in and around London – it must also provide new homes and jobs across the region.

The new connections across the capital will support the UK’s single largest employment area, providing opportunities for thousands of new jobs.

Furthermore, linking the route to housing development would unlock large areas of outer London and beyond, including the Upper Lea Valley, supporting up to 200,000 new homes. 

Crossrail 2 already has overwhelming public support, with a recent Transport for London and Network Rail consultation showing 95% of almost 14,000 respondents ‘strongly supporting’ or ‘supporting’ the scheme.

As Crossrail 1 has shown, here in Britain we now have world class capability when it comes to planning and delivering major infrastructure projects.

We need Crossrail 2, we have the skill to build it, now we need to get on with it.


Baroness Jo Valentine is chief executive of business lobby organisation London First