A world-class new railway for London and the south east

Crossrail is among the most significant infrastructure projects ever undertaken in the UK. From improving journey times across London, to easing congestion and offering better connections, Crossrail will provide easier, quicker and more direct travel opportunities across the capital for the first time via new railway lines and tunnels.

The new railway will be a high frequency, high capacity service to 40 stations linking Reading and Heathrow in the west, to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east via 21 km of new twin-bore tunnels under central London.  It will bring an additional 1.5 million people within 45 minutes commuting distance of London's key business districts.

Around 200 million passengers will travel on Crossrail each year and the route will provide a 10% increase to rail capacity in the capital.  Crossrail will provide connections with more underground lines than any other service, which will enable more direct journeys and simpler interchanges.

Crossrail will make travelling in the region easier and quicker and will reduce crowding on London's transport network, operating with main line size trains carrying more than 1500 passengers in each train during peak periods. Our trains will be 200 metres - that's almost twice as much a London Underground train - creating a more comfortable passenger experience.

40 stations connected, 10 new stations - a new railway for the 21st century

  • 30 existing Network Rail stations from Reading in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east will be connected to 21km of twin-bore tunnels under central London
  • 10 new Crossrail stations are being built at Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House, Woolwich and Abbey Wood
  • The new stations will be on a scale not seen since the Jubilee Line Extension opened in 1999

New train services, reduced journey times

  • Crossrail will deliver new train services and reduced journey times with up to 24 trains per hour between Paddington and Whitechapel during peak times
  • Each Crossrail train will be around 200 metres long and be able to accommodate up to 1,500 passengers
  • Around 200 million passengers will travel on Crossrail each year

26 miles of new rail tunnels under central London

  • New twin-bore tunnels measuring 21km in length have been built under central London
  • 8 giant tunnelling machines weaved their way between existing underground lines, sewers, utilities and building foundations at depths of up to 40 metres to create the tunnels required to deliver the new railway
  • A total of 7 million tonnes of material will be excavated during the construction of Crossrail, 98% of all excavated material will be re-used

Central and south-east section

New Crossrail stations are being constructed in central London and the docklands at Paddington, Tottenham Court Road, Bond Street, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House and Woolwich.  An additional new station is being built at Abbey Wood. 

The construction of Crossrail’s new stations is now more than 60% complete, with over 10 miles of platform and station tunnels created beneath the streets of the capital.

Visit our Near You map to explore the route and find information about each of the new stations under construction.

Upgrading the surface rail network 

Network Rail is responsible for the design, development and delivery of the parts of Crossrail that are on the existing network, covering 110km of track and 29 stations from Reading in the west to Abbey Wood and Shenfield in the east.

The work will integrate Crossrail with the national rail network, delivering more frequent trains into central London from the east and west.  Network Rail will do all of this on an active operational railway, delivering vital upgrade works whilst minimising disruption to train services.

  • Step free access - there will be step-free access at all the stations on the route
  • Longer trains, more passengers - platform extensions will allow longer, higher capacity trains to be used
  • London links - when it opens from 2018, Crossrail will provide new transport links with the Tube, Thameslink, National Rail, DLR and London Overground

Stations will be upgraded to requirements set by the Department for Transport and Transport for London and overseen by Crossrail.

For further information about the Network Rail programme of works visit our western section and eastern section pages.

Explore Crossrail

Paddington Station

Paddington Station

Paddington station is undergoing the most significant transformation it has seen since it was first built in the 1800s.... Read more

Bond Street Station

Bond Street Station

More than 155,000 passengers use the existing Tube station daily. When Crossrail arrives in 2018, passenger numbers... Read more

Tottenham Court Road Station

Tottenham Court Road Station

Crossrail is working alongside TfL on a £1bn transformation of Tottenham Court Road Station, the biggest transport... Read more

Whitechapel Station

Whitechapel Station

The new Whitechapel Crossrail station will use the existing Whitechapel Road entrance to the Whitechapel London Underground... Read more