Wednesday, 20 October 2010

CSR - reading between the lines

Telegrammed by Our International Correspondent
So that was interesting!

£6 billion for “capital maintenance” of LUL?

Capital Maintenance is a very specific term – it means spending to maintain the value of the asset at a steady state. This just means keeping LUL as it is – doing proper running repairs to prevent decay. It isn’t investment in enhancements. It is rather less than Baroness Vadera promised over the first 7 years of the Metrodebt and Tubelines fiasco, and hopefully more deliverable.

On London’s cross-city white-elephant, it is odd that there is no actual number attached to the Treasury's commitment to Crossrail, given that bits of it are already being built.

The Crossrail website, in its helpful FAQ section says DaFT will be paying £5 billion, which seems clear enough. The less helpful press statement about driving down costs, dated 27 September
does not give a revised headline number, and merely says £30 million has been taken out of the cost of the new station at Whitechapel.

So more details please.

Perhaps the most illuminating line in the CSR Spending Review document is: "investment to improve journey reliability on Great Western Main Line services to Wales".

If you type this into the Babelfish translation engine and select 'Weasel to English' it says “Electrification not required, refresh HSTs”

UPDATE: This from @AdamBienkov, via Twitter...

Boris says that Crossrail will be delayed a further year #csr