Lib Dem London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon has been digging out figures from Transport for London (TfL) again, this time about the huge costs run up by the regular weekend closures of the Jubilee Line which has been beset by over-running engineering works.
Each closure costs TfL money in lost fares and in costs for putting on replacement buses. The numbers she has extracted put the bills for weekend closures since April 2007 at £15.7 million in lost fares and £13 million on replacement buses, for a total of just under £29 million.
A year ago the Mayor and Transport for London admitted that the upgrade programme on the Jubilee Line would slip once again. After years of disruption to passengers, communities and businesses they announced a further year of weekend closures which has only just finished.
There has now been years of misery faced by passengers who simply wished to travel around London. Sadly the fiasco of dragged out weekend closures has also hit many businesses hard. From restaurants and West End theatres to the O2 Centre, the amount of lost weekend trade has been immense.
It simply adds insult to injury to now finally discover that in addition to the cost already paid for by passengers and businesses there has been such a serious loss in revenue for Transport for London and such a huge bill for replacement buses.
The upgrade on the Jubilee Line has been a case study in exactly how not to upgrade the tube. I just hope that the Mayor has learnt from these mistakes.
One small step the Mayor could take to apologise for the Jubilee fiasco is to honour his promise to extend the running hours of this line at weekends. He promised he would do this for every tube line. At the very least he should ensure this now happens on the Jubilee Line. After so much pain for users of the Jubilee Line it is time for some gain.”