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LONDON-London’s long-awaited Crossrail service, which would allow mainline trains to pass under central London on a line between Liverpool Street in the City and Paddington in the West End, moved closer to reality with the decision by Transport Minister John Spellar to commission a new feasibility study.

The central part of the route, which would include stations at Tottenham Court Road and Bond Street, has been agreed since the early 1990s. But the new study will look at options including a link to Docklands in the east and Heathrow airport in the west.

The Strategic Rail Authority and Transport for London have been asked by Spellar to produce a report early in 2002 on the feasibility, costs and financing options for Crossrail.’The Government is determined to improve rail links into and within London,’ said Spellar. ‘Crossrail would support the continuing development of London as a World City, and its role as the key financial centre of the UK and Europe, support London’s economic growth and its regeneration areas, tackle the lack of capacity and congestion on the existing network, and provide improved east-west rail access into and across London from the East and South East regions.’

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