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Crossrail to finally open in summer 2021 - two-and-a-half years behind schedule

The crisis-hit £18bn Crossrail project will finally open in summer2021, about two-and-a-half years later than originally hoped.

Rail bosses set out an improved timetable for the officialopening today, with previous estimates from Transport for London (TfL) saying the line will be even further delayed.

Senior executives on the project’s board met with members of Transport for London yesterday to discuss when the rail line will open.

In a statement this morning, rail bosses confirmed the central section between Paddington and Abbey Wood is expected to open in summer 2021.

Full services heading out to Reading and Heathrow will be running by May 2022.

It was originally hoped the rail line would open in December 2018, but numerous issues with construction and safety issues have led to huge delays.

Costs have soared by over £4bn, with TfL also having lost potentially millions of pounds revenue from tickets.

Mark Wild, Chief Executive of Crossrail, said:“I know that Londoners are deeply frustrated by the delays to the Elizabeth line and we are doing everything we can to get this railway finished and open.

“We continue to make good progress with the central section now reaching substantial completion and we are increasingly confident that Bond Street station will be ready to open with the rest of the railway.

“We have a comprehensive plan to complete the Elizabeth line and the milestones we must hit during 2020, including the testing of the signalling and train systems and safety assurance, but there are no short cuts to delivery of this hugely complex railway.”