London’s newest railway – the Elizabeth line – opened today, and Mott MacDonald is part of this historic moment in the UK capital’s history.

It’s fantastic to see the fruition of decades of work. Since the earliest stages of its planning and design right through to its opening today, Mott MacDonald has been involved in designing shafts and vast underground caverns for platforms and crossovers, stations, traction power and signalling, trains and more.

Mott MacDonald most recently led the station integration team responsible for the testing, commissioning and bringing into use the 10 new central stations from Paddington to Abbey Wood. 

Mott MacDonald’s ambition to create positive social outcomes has driven its involvement with Crossrail. The Elizabeth line will transform travel across London and the South East and its positive impact should not be underestimated. The line will improve transport links and cut journey times while providing additional, accessible capacity.

The project also demonstrates a strong focus on decarbonisation. New designs have saved thousands of tonnes of carbon and the line is serviced by 200-metre-long trains that have been designed to include light weight bodies, energy efficient air conditioning and utilise regenerative braking returning energy back into the power supply – as a result they will use up to 30% less energy.

Neil Henderson, Mott MacDonald’s key account director and project director for Crossrail, said:

“We’ve touched on many aspects of the project since its earliest days. For me it is the stories of the people who have worked on Crossrail that bring to life the long journey many of us have been on. I am particularly inspired by the stories from apprentices who joined the project after leaving school and have used their experience and lessons learned from Crossrail to develop and grow their careers.”

John Bettles, Mott MacDonald’s global railway systems professional head, said:

“I’m very proud to have led the team which has co-ordinated the final testing and bringing into use of the Elizabeth line central stations. The testing and commissioning of the highly complex station systems and integration with routeway SCADA communications systems has been a huge challenge, but adopting a collaborative integrated approach across the various contracts and stakeholders has been absolutely key in the success of the stations programme.”