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TfL Broadway plans attract more criticism from Green Party

Plans by TfL to redevelop 55 Broadway, the home of London Underground, have attracted further criticism from the Green Party today over an apparent lack of affordable housing in the plans.

“Rapidly rising prices and rents, are major reasons why Londoners are feeling priced out of their own city. The Mayor should be using every opportunity he has to increase the amount of social housing in London, as that is the best way of putting a brake on run-a-way prices.

Instead, the Mayor is adding fuel to a rising property market by allowing Transport for London to build and sell luxury flats in central London and Earls Court...

...The Mayor is selling the family silver, whilst leaving Londoners without any long term benefit in terms of housing that will stay affordable.

– Darren Johnson, London Assembly Green Party Member


Tube headquarters set for revamp

The overground embodiment of London's Underground Tube network is to undergo a mass transformation, transport bosses will announce today.

The Underground's historic home, 55 Broadway, is to be redeveloped into residential accommodation as part of plans by Transport for London (TfL) to generate more non-fare revenue.

Bosses expect the Grade I listed Westminster building, which has stood for 85 years, to be converted from offices into new retail units and residential space, including some affordable housing.

London fares cap 'little more than electioneering'

While this is welcome news, Londoners will see this move for what it is - electioneering the year before a General Election.

Boris Johnson cannot escape the fact that he pledged to keep fares low, but has now overseen a 40% rise in average travel costs - that's 13% higher than inflation over his six years as Mayor. Bus passengers have suffered in particular, with a 59p rise in the cost of Pay as You Go fares under Boris.

With the Mayor planning to all but vacate City Hall and become an MP in 2015, he is set to leave behind a rotten legacy of above inflation fare rises throughout his Mayoralty. By January commuters in Uxbridge and South Ruislip, for example, will have had to stump up an extra £560 on an annual zone 1-6 travel card since Boris came to power in 2008.

– Val Shawcross, Labour London Assembly member

Tube and fares 'held down' by government funding

This morning I am announcing we will freeze fares across TfL in 2015 on average at RPI rather than RPI + 1% for the second year running.

Whilst we need continually to invest in our transport network, and passengers understand that, it is vital we hold down fares for hard working Londoners wherever we can.

Working with the Chancellor I have secured government funding to cover the cost in full between my decision to cap fares at RPI and TfL's business plan, which set fares at RPI plus 1%.

That means we can hold fares down without compromising one penny of our modernisation programme, delivering a faster, more efficient transport network that reaches more Londoners than ever before.

– Boris Johnson


London Underground: 'no compulsory redundancies'

A new phase of industrial action on the Tube begins next Wednesday, with RMT union members banning overtime in the ongoing row over ticket office closures.

"We have been in constant dialogue with trades unions and staff over our plans to modernise and improve customer service on the Tube, and we will continue with these discussions. As a result of our plans we have guaranteed that there will be no compulsory redundancies, anyone who wants to stay with us can have a job and no one will lose pay providing they are prepared to be flexible. Today, less than 3% of journeys involve a visit to a ticket office. This trend is set to continue with the introduction of contactless bank card payment from September 16 this year. In future we will have more staff visible and available to help our customers buy the right ticket, plan their journey and keep them safe and secure. The only way to resolve the issues raised is to continue talking and not threatening further industrial action."

– Phil Hufton, London Underground chief operating officer

New industrial action on the Tube

London Underground workers are to begin a new phase of industrial action in a long-running row over Tube ticket office closures. Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union will ban overtime and refuse to take part in courses from next Wednesday.

Unions have been in dispute over the closures, and loss of hundreds of jobs, since last year.Workers have previously taken strike action over the closure plans

"This next phase of action has been called for the clear and simple reason that London Underground has failed to engage in serious discussions over cash-led cuts to jobs, services and safety which ignore harsh realities like the 10% increase in violent assaults on the Tube and which instead are based on a bankrupt Thatcherite ideology handed down by Mayor Boris Johnson as he gears up for a return to Parliament and a pitch for David Cameron's job. "RMT has scrutinised the details and it is clear to us that many locations will be left without sufficient staff to safely and effectively run stations."

– Mick Cash, RMT acting general secretary

She was sexually assaulted on the tube. What she did next might surprise you.

Police moved to reassure commuters today after revealing a huge increase in sexual assaults on our transport network. Total crime on trains and tubes in London and the South East has remained reasonably stable - more than 40 thousand offences is slightly down on last year. But there's been a sharp increase in sex crimes reported - on the tube and DLR up 31% to 428. On trains its a similar picture - sexual offences are up 30% to 417.

Police say it's because victims feel more comfortable coming forward. So should we feel safe on public transport?

See more of what Ellie did to reclaim the tube, following the assault. WARNING: her YouTube video at this link contains sexually explicit language.

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