After two decades of planning and nine years of building work, 2018 is the year that Crossrail finally opens. The first train is not due to run on new track until December but the new links have already become engrained in the London housing market.
Homeowners along the route have seen the value of their home rise further and faster than those in neighbourhoods elsewhere in the capital. In the nine years since construction began, the average home within a 1km of a Crossrail station has risen in value 8% more than one elsewhere in the same zone. In cash terms this means that since 2009, the average owner has seen their property rise in value by £51,000 more than those further away from a Crossrail station.
House prices in outer London have seen the biggest impact from Crossrail. Journey times into central London will be cut more than anywhere else. In the parts of Outer London where house prices sat below the average for the zone, Crossrail has closed some or all of this gap.
It’s not just about houses prices, Crossrail has tempted house builders into new markets in Outer London. Building sites emblazoned with Crossrail branding have become a common sight. In the nine years since construction started, 11,000 more homes have been built around Crossrail stations in Outer London than if pre-Crossrail housebuilding rates had simply continued. Even before it is up and running, Crossrail has done more than most new infrastructure schemes to shape the face of London.