Thursday 6 December 2018 5:25 pm

TfL and Crossrail to pay £15m to Canary Wharf Group if Elizabeth Line station is not complete by 2021

Transport for London (TfL) and Crossrail could have to fork out £15m to the Canary Wharf Group if its new Elizabeth Line station is not complete by 2021, City A.M. can reveal.

An email from outgoing Crossrail chief executive Simon Wright, seen by City A.M., reveals that TfL and Crossrail will have to pay the sum each year if the station at Canary Wharf is not completed by 31 December 2021. 

On top of that obligation, there is also a "service commitment obligation", which, if not met, leads to a liability which is capped at £15m per annum, the email says. Each of the obligations are capped in the aggregate at £150m.

Canary Wharf Group is just one of several London businesses that have poured funding into Crossrail, otherwise known as the Elizabeth Line. The group contributed £150m towards the costs of the new Crossrail station.

At the end of August it was announced that the £15.4bn railway would open next autumn instead of this December owing to delays in signalling and infrastructure testing. 

The email also reveals that Berkeley Homes, which agreed to build and fit-out Woolwich station, does not have an agreement with TfL that contains any penalties for delays. 

The delay to the Elizabeth Line, which will stretch from Heathrow in the west to Abbey Wood in the east through central London, has sparked a row between Crossrail and TfL that led to the resignation of Crossrail chairman Terry Morgan yesterday.

Before he tendered his resignation, Morgan said he was in "absolutely no doubt" that London mayor Sadiq Khan was told it would not be feasible to open the railway in 2018, contradicting the mayor's account that he was only informed of the need for a new opening date on 29 August, two days before the public announcement.

The London Assembly, which has been investigating the delay, has accused Khan of "misleading" the public about what he knew about the delay.

Yesterday it took the rare move of using its powers to summon Khan and TfL commissioner Mike Brown to attend an extraordinary meeting on Crossrail later this month. 

A spokesperson for TfL said: “Everyone involved in this project is fully focused on bringing the Elizabeth Line into service for passengers as soon as possible. Work is continuing between the government, mayor and Transport for London on finalising a financing package to deliver this.”

Canary Wharf Group declined to comment. Berkeley has been approached for comment.