With the Jubilee line closed most weekends this summer some local residents have been wondering why the replacement bus service doesn't follow the route of the tube line.
Lib Dem London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon (who is also a Southwark councillor) tabled a question to Mayor of London Boris Johnson to ask why the replacement bus service for tube passengers from Canada Water and Bermondsey to London Bridge crosses the river to terminate at Bank rather than continuing west to Waterloo along the Jubilee line route.
"The closures on the Jubilee line are in connection with the line upgrade which, when completed, will increase capacity and reduce journey times for all customers using the line," says Boris Johnson.
"Closures of the eastern end of the line are likely to continue until the end of August before the work shifts to the northern/western end.
He added: "While Waterloo was considered as the destination for the rail replacement bus service from Canada Water, it was not pursued because there is not enough space for additional buses to turn or wait for customers.
"Instead the decision was taken to route the service to Bank/Monument, which provides customers with connections to five alternative Underground lines and the DLR. In many cases this gives customers a fast and effective alternative route to their final destination."
The Mayor claims that passengers between London Bridge and Waterloo can use bus routes 381 and RV1 which he says "have sufficient capacity to meet the additional demand during Jubilee line closures". He also suggest that Travelcard holders use mainline trains to Waterloo East.
Caroline Pidgeon isn't impressed by the Mayor's response.
"It seems extraordinary that TfL decide on where to route rail replacement buses without, it would appear, consulting the local community," she says.
"Many local residents would prefer for the replacement service at weekends to go to Waterloo. I have no doubt there is capacity on York Road at the weekend and I hope TfL will reconsider their position."
Last month Tube Lines, the company responsible for the Jubilee line's maintenance and renewal, requested additional weekend closures to enable them to complete the upgrade of the line on time.
Transport for London says that the upgrade will enable them to run a train every two minutes at peak times on the Jubilee line, providing a third more capacity over and above the 17 per cent increase that was achieved through the addition of a seventh carriage to each train at the beginning of 2006.
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