Three items recently in the news to note about CrossRail:
- George Osborne, the Shadow Chancellor, is examining CrossRail for efficiency savings - though he will not pull the plug on the project if made Chancellor following a General Election.
- From April 2010 the Mayor will tap business for £4.1bn of funding for the scheme, levying a 2p in the pound tax on all business properties with a rateable value of over £50,000.
- CrossRail has raided 94% of the money awarded so far for the Transport Innovation Fund - that's £5.639bn of money which will cover the Government's grant, and also underwrite the promised contributions by the City of London and BAA.
Which all goes to show that CrossRail is being funded, though the cupboard appears increasingly bare should there be over-runs or other problems along the way. The 'efficiency savings' which the Conservatives discover will also give a decent steer as to their transport priorities for the capital - if, indeed, they have any.