Crossrail funding fears

The Guardian is reporting that a £30 billion funding gap in Britain's transport budget could delay Crossrail:

A leaked industry memo seen by the Guardian warned of "looming spending cuts" on major transport projects after Department for Transport officials described the consequences of restoring order to public finances. There are now fears that major schemes could be delayed, reduced or scrapped in an expenditure freeze. They include the £16bn Crossrail scheme linking Heathrow Airport to Canary Wharf and Essex, which could be delayed.

Although work has already begun on the project in locations including Canary Wharf and Tottenham Court Road, there have been fears for some time that the project's funding might still be reviewed; suspicions fuelled by articles such as this one by Simon Jenkins.

Crossrail will create a new interchange with the East London Line at Whitechapel, providing Brockley residents with a much faster route to west London and Heathrow than at present. More importantly, it's vital to the growth of Canary Wharf and other business districts in east London, currently constrained by the limits of the Jubilee Line. Crossrail will help to drag the centre of London's gravity eastwards and - in this respect - is important for the long-term prosperity of south east London (not to mention the fact that it will serve Woolwich and Abbey Wood).

Its delay, therefore, would constitute a serious setback for this part of the city.

[Brockley Nick here: While I hope I've done enough over the last 3 years of blogging about Brockley to demonstrate that my motives are pure and true, in the interests of transparency, I should note that the company I work for provides public relations support for a company with a commercial interest in Crossrail]