WORK on the already behind schedule Crossrail has been halted due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The scheme, which has added Twyford and Reading to the tube map, had hoped to launch Trial Running, in the autumn as the central sections of the line neared completion.
This would see multiple trains operating in the tunnels to simulate the Elizabeth line timetable.
When completed, it will see trains running from Reading and Heathrow in the west to Abbey Wood and Shenfield in the east.
However, to help prevent the spread of the virus, work has been temporarily halted.
In December, Transport for London (TfL) started running the stopping services between Paddington mainline and Reading ahead of the service becoming part of the Elizabeth line when it fully opens.
Mike Brown MVO, London’s Transport Commissioner, said: “The Government and the Mayor have given clear instructions to stay safe and to stop travelling in all cases other than critical workers making absolutely essential journeys.
“In line with this, TfL and Crossrail will be bringing all project sites to a temporary Safe Stop unless they need to continue for operational safety reasons. This means that work on all such projects will be temporarily suspended as soon as it is safe to do so. Essential maintenance of the transport network will of course continue.
“This is being done to ensure the safety of our construction and project teams and also to further reduce the number of people travelling on the public transport network. It is vital that the transport network is only used by critical workers.
“As we work through these issues with our supply chain, consideration will be given to the impact on workers, particularly those who are on low incomes.”