Wednesday, 1 October 2008


In the beginning there was the Railway network. Then someone dug a tunnel and created the Underground network (though a lot of it runs overground). Then, somewhere between the two a light rail network was conceived for the Docklands. Not long after a Tramlink network for Croydon, and an Overground network, which was pinched off the Railway network and the Underground network (and some of it runs underground). Soon to be added is a Crossrail network, which is a bit like a Thameslink network, only it isn't, and maybe a cross-river transit or two, which is sort of a tram.

Isn't it all getting a teensy bit over-complicated?

Some off-the-cuff suggestions:

Couldn't DLR and London Overground be integrated? Train profile and power supply differences notwithstanding, they kind of do the same thing.

Couldn't Thameslink be integrated into the new Crossrail scheme. Again, it's kind of the same concept.

Couldn't London Overground absorb some more of the inner south London rail network to start providing a more rational "metro" service.

Three networks is about all I can get my head around...


RapidTransitMan said...

Certainly a case of Continental rebranding would simplify things greatly, a la RER, S-Bahn/U-Bahn etc.

London Overground routes should become separate Tube lines, as they have been successfully branded as tube like frequencies & signage. This'd also simplify the 5 or so LO routings, with the same colour on the Tube map, as separate lines, perhaps as LO1, LO2 etc for better identification.

Thameslink is really the 1st Crossrail, and so should be rebranded as a Crossrail route.

Unfortunately the tram has not been replicated beyond Croyden, but if/when it is could be rebranded as different tram routes like Paris' T1, T2, T3 etc.

Like you suggest, each rail mode (tram, tube & tube-like, & express mainline train thru London) would have its own all inclusive brand.

Rebranding can be done very successfully, look at Overground.

RapidTransitMan said...

To clarify, the DLR network would be considered part of the Tube, as it is shown on every Tube map.