Watford’s Liberal Democrat Mayor, Peter Taylor, has written to the Prime Minister today to urge him to consider restarting the project to extend the Metropolitan Line to Watford Junction and build two tube stations in the town.
The call comes ahead of the government’s budget next month and indications that the Prime Minister wants to invest in improvements to transport infrastructure across the country.
In the letter Mayor Peter Taylor reminds Prime Minister Boris Johnson of his commitment to the scheme when he was Mayor of London.
In 2018 the project was abandoned because Transport for London was not prepared to cover any of the risks associated with the scheme, which was fully funded.
The Mayor goes on to argue that the project is ‘shovel ready’ with the preparatory work having been completed.
It is estimated that extending the Metropolitan Line to Watford Junction would boost the local economy by £2bn and create over 6,500 jobs.
Watford Mayor Peter Taylor commented: “It is vital that we make big improvements to local transport to support our growth and provide people with more choices to use sustainable modes of transport. Nobody disputes that extending the Metropolitan Line to Watford Junction would create a really import link – supporting new jobs and would be good for our environment too.
“This scheme was fully funded and is ready to go. It was halted because the current Mayor of London was not prepared to cover any of the risks associated with the scheme, even though the funding included generous contingencies and Transport for London would have been responsible for delivering the project.
“If the Prime Minister is serious about improving the country’s transport infrastructure, he should restart this project. By reopening five miles of disused rail track, we can link the Metropolitan Line to Watford Junction, Hertfordshire’s busiest train station.
“Boris Johnson has shown his commitment to this idea in the past. He is now looking for ‘shovel ready’ schemes across the country and this is one that he must not overlook.”