The London Chamber of Commerce and Industry says “The next Mayor of London needs to urgently secure the funding for the proposed Bakerloo line extension.”
The group, which represents the interests of businesses across the capital, made the call in its manifesto published ahead of the forthcoming London mayoral election.
The Chamber says that the capital’s rising population is placing existing housing and transport infrastructure under severe pressure.
With London’s population expected to reach 10.8 million by 2041, the Bakerloo line extension, together with the modernisation of the existing line, will be critical to tackle the housing crisis and supporting London’s growth and productivity.
Extending the Bakerloo line will enable an additional 12,000 new homes to be built in the Old Kent Road regeneration area – bringing the total to 20,000 – and it will enable all the new homes to be delivered much more quickly. It will also boost the local economy and jobs; improve connectivity; reduce journey times; reduce congestion and improve air quality.
It will also have a huge economic impact along the whole route.
A report, commissioned by Lewisham and Southwark councils, has estimated that the Bakerloo line extension would mean an average economic boost of £7bn per year to the economies of the two boroughs over ten years, supporting 5,500 new temporary and 6,000 new permanent jobs along the route.
The proposals will bring south east and central London closer together and provide capacity for 87,000 additional journeys into the capital every morning peak. This will give a much-needed boost to the central London economy by accommodating new jobs and expanding the labour and customer pool for central London businesses.
Cllr. Peter John, Leader of Southwark Council, said:
“The south-east of London has been woefully under-served by the London Underground network for too long. We firmly believe the Bakerloo line extension is essential to open up new opportunities for jobs and businesses across the city and down into the south east of London, as well as being essential for the much needed delivery of new homes, especially affordable housing, and services that will make a real difference to people living and working in this part of Southwark.”
Damien Egan, Mayor of Lewisham said:
“The Bakerloo line extension would be revolutionary for Lewisham. It will cut journey times between Lewisham and central London with trains every 2-3 minutes, make it easier for our residents to get around, and bring more businesses and jobs to Lewisham. London Chamber of Commerce’s support gives a real boost to our Back the Bakerloo campaign. I’m pleased to the benefits of the extension have been recognised by the London Chamber of Commerce and welcome them to our Back the Bakerloo campaign to secure this vital piece of infrastructure for London.”
Sean McKee, Policy Director at London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said:
“The Bakerloo line extension will be crucial to optimising the full potential of south east London, keeping our city growing, tackling the housing crisis and improving our transport network. But the project is not yet a ‘done deal’, and for trains to start running as planned by 2030, the next Mayor of London will need to urgently the secure the funding and powers to get construction started. That’s why the London Chamber’s just-published agenda for the upcoming elections urges the next Mayor of London to Back the Bakerloo.”