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Crossrail appoints Operations Director to oversee future Crossrail services

By Peter MacLennan

Crossrail today announced the appointment of Howard Smith as Operations Director.

Howard Smith is currently Chief Operating Officer for Rail at Transport for London and has successfully led the £1bn East London Line extension project as well as the development, launch and operation of London Overground and management of its operating concession.

Howard Smith will be responsible for leading the development of Crossrail’s operational and customer service strategy, defining the structure of the new railway’s operating and maintenance organisations as well as leading on the arrangements for the future Crossrail operating concession.

Andrew Wolstenholme, Crossrail Chief Executive said: “Howard Smith has significant and diverse railway experience having overseen the creation of London Overground and worked on DLR, national rail, London Underground and the successful 2012 Games. His knowledge of railway operations and the delivery of high-quality rail services in London and the southeast is unrivalled.”

Howard Smith will report jointly to Crossrail Chief Executive Andrew Wolstenholme and London Underground and Rail Managing Director Mike Brown.


For further information contact the Crossrail Press Office on 020 3229 9552 or email [email protected]

Notes to Editor

Howard Smith will join Crossrail Limited on 25 March 2013.

Howard studied economics at LSE before managing train operations and stations in South and West London.  In the 1990s he worked on Channel Tunnel rail freight services, establishing joint ventures with Belgian and Swiss public and private sector partners. He became Managing Director of one of these joint ventures, operating rail freight services in France, Spain and Italy. 

In 1998 Howard joined the Docklands Light Railway and lead the City Airport and Woolwich Arsenal Extensions, as well as planning the 3-car capacity upgrade.

Howard moved to London Rail as Chief Operating Officer at the end of 2004 where he has had responsibility for the successful delivery of a £3billion investment programme which created London Overground, expanded and upgraded the DLR and Tramlink, as well as planning Crossrail operations.

Howard was heavily involved in the planning and delivery of the London 2012 Games and Paralympics when DLR and London Overground delivered record levels of performance whilst moving up to twice the regular number of passengers.

About Crossrail

The total funding envelope available to deliver Crossrail is £14.8bn.

The Crossrail route will pass through 37 stations and run 118 km (73 miles) from Maidenhead and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km (13 miles) tunnels below central London to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.

When Crossrail opens it will increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10%, supporting regeneration and cutting journey times across the city. Crossrail services are due to commence through central London in 2018.

Crossrail is being delivered by Crossrail Limited (CRL). CRL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London. Crossrail is jointly sponsored by the Department for Transport and Transport for London.