The Economist on East London Line

Last post based on an Economist article for a while, we promise, but a few people tipped us off about this one and it's relevant to London's "great inversion", as well as our daily commutes.

Last week, the magazine focused on the London Overground's impact on areas along its route and claims the TfL-run model is likely to be rolled-out to other services as a result of its success, with the South Eastern service among the most likely to be taken over:

Since it opened in 2010—with extensions in 2011 and 2012—the London Overground changed two things. First, the way that commuters get around the capital has shifted. In 2008, 33m passengers zipped up and down the service. Last year 120m did. Fully 64% of those who use the network are getting to and from work. This initially lightened heavily congested trains on the Southern service (another line running along the route) with 46% of new passengers swapping from other train services...
Second, areas that were once underdeveloped became more popular... In Peckham Rye, another stop on the service in the south-east, average values went up by 24%. In New Cross, also in the south-east, the average value of property sold increased by 12%. Many buyers are young professional families, says Abdallah Osman of Winkworth, another estate agent. By contrast, average property values in Highgate, a leafy suburb in north London fell by 8%, while those in Muswell Hill, also in the north, fell by 3%. As prices go up across London, younger families and rich professionals are pushed farther east... 

But the continuing success of the Overground will not come smoothly. TfL predicts that several parts of the line will be crammed with commuters by 2016... Squeezed buses and Tubes in the East End have not seen the decline of 6m passengers originally predicted. New passengers have simply taken the place of those who have swapped to the Overground.

For the full article, click here.


AnonOne said...

Interesting article. The house price paragraph looks a little dodgy though, possibly from poor editing. The period is not clear, but the article implies 2007-2012 and states London as a whole went up 25% then, which suggests Peckham Rye and New Cross were below average.

Matt-Z said...

It's also off the mark with speculation that TfL/London Overground will take over any of SouthEastern's services any time soon.

It was looking likely that the inner-suburban services would go to TfL but Kent councillors - ignorant of the facts and wrongly of the belief that TfL would reduce the long distance services in favour of London routes, and hostile to any GLA authority over their patch - vetoed it. Sadly they were mistaken, TfL had proposed increasing inner London services in the off-peaks, with more frequent and later evening services filling unused gaps in the timetable. There would have been no cuts to peak (or indeed any) mainline Kent services.

Penny Short said...

The crush at Honor Oak Park Station is living proof to the fact transport patterns for London based young professionals has radically altered since the Overground opened.
It is also testament to the fact the writer for The Economist is completely unaware there is any part of London located south of the River Thames.

Brockley Nick said...

He lives in Brixton, so I guess he knows a little.

Penny Short said...

Nice try Nicky babe.
You nearly got me there.
Only thing is - Brixton isn't south of the Thames.
'Cause Brixtons on the tube.

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