TfL detailed costs for Heathrow Expansion

Transport for London hits back at Chris Grayling’s dismissal of Heathrow costs

Rebecca Smith 1st December 2016
TfL has stood by its cost estimates of transport improvements to Heathrow

TfL has stood by its cost estimates of transport improvements to Heathrow (Source: Getty)

Transport for London (TfL) has hit back at the transport secretary, after he branded its cost estimates for rail and road improvements around Heathrow expansion “ludicrous”.

The Airports Commission had estimated that surface infrastructure changes would cost £5bn, but TfL responded by saying the figure underestimated the cost and required changes would cost in the realms of £15bn-£20bn.

A TfL spokesperson reiterated the prediction after Chris Grayling said he did not see where the £15bn could have come from.

Read moreThe boss of BA had no idea Heathrow expansion would demolish his £200m HQ

Expansion at Heathrow will significantly increase demand for access to the airport,” they said.

Our expert analysis indicates approximately £15bn more investment will be needed beyond what is already committed and the key component of this is a new southern rail link from Waterloo to Heathrow.

Thus far, the government has given no commitments to deliver this new rail link, despite the Airport’s Commissions recommendation to do so and, without such a commitment, the aspirations for no increase in road traffic are not credible.

Transport for London analysis of Heathrow expansion surface access costs


Funder Delivery TfL estimate
M4 SMART Motorway Highways England 2020s -
Expansion enabling works No Expansion £1.2bn
M4 widening Junctions 2-4a No Expansion £2.0bn
Maintenance for new roads/tunnels (to 2050) No Expansion c. £0.7bn
Local road capacity and bus enhancement measures No Expansion c. £1.6bn
Area traffic management No Expansion c. £0.8bn
Crossrail Yes 2018 -
Piccadilly line Upgrade Yes 2020s -
Western Rail Access “Committed” 2024 £0.6bn
Southern Rail Access No Expansion -
South West Main Line Link No Expansion c. £8.0bn
TOTAL c. £15bn 

Read moreChris Grayling calls TfL’s Heathrow expansion cost estimates “ludicrous”


Grayling made the comments yesterday while giving evidence to the Environmental Audit Committee on Heathrow’s third runway.

On TfL’s cost estimate for surface infrastructure changes, the transport secretary said it looked to him as if “somebody has taken every possible transport improvement in the whole of metropolitan London and thrown it into the mix, and probably funding a large chunk of Crossrail 2 out of it as well”.

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