THE multi-billion pound Crossrail project will now extend as far as Reading, it was announced today (Thursday).
The scheme will connect Berkshire and Buckinghamshire to Essex and Kent via London by 2019. The service had been to due to run only as far as Maidenhead.
The move was welcomed by Reading East MP Rob Wilson who said it was only the first of a two-stage process in delivering the economic benefits of Crossrail for Reading and the wider area.
He said: This first phase will not reap the full benefits that Crossrail can and should bring because there will be so many stops between here and London and journey times will be no faster than they are now.
I am therefore pleased that the rail minister has announced that the infrastructure improvements needed to deliver a more rapid and direct Crossrail service with fewer stops and faster journey times will be fully analysed as part of the next investment review.
The relevant infrastructure could be put in place as soon as 2020/21, just two years after Crossrail services to Reading start.