Christmas closures of part of the new Elizabeth line are needed to prepare the ground for the full opening of the 73-mile route and a record-breaking 2023, says Transport for London.
A small number of services will not run directly through the tunnels, thus requiring a change at Paddington or Liverpool Street National Rail stations, particularly in the early morning.
The full peak timetable will be in place next May, when the frequency will increase to 24 trains per hour between Paddington and Whitechapel (16 in the off-peak). Direct services from Shenfield to Heathrow Airport will also start at the same time.
In the meantime, the economic uplift to the capital caused by the Elizabeth line is already noticeable.
More than 70 million journeys have now been made since its initial opening in May, half of them in the central section between Paddington and Woolwich. And there are now 41 step-free stations in use.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said the £9 billion project had created 55,000 jobs, adding: “The benefits of the Elizabeth line expand far beyond London, as it’s helping to contribute £42bn to the UK economy.”
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