Chancellor George Osborne has intervened in a dispute over whether a new fast rail line should be built between London and Stansted.
Network Rail plans for work in East Anglia issued last autumn did not prioritise creating four tracks on the London-Stansted line to alleviate a bottleneck in Hertfordshire.
This sparked criticism from Airports Commission chairman Sir Howard Davies and London mayor Boris Johnson, prompting Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne to admit in a letter to the Times that he had ordered a new look at the issue.
Osborne has now revealed in a statement on the future of London that “Network Rail is leading a cross-industry study to improve the rail link between London and Stansted ... to report [this] spring/summer”.
The chancellor also said that he and the mayor had come together to “establish a West Anglia Task Force to look at opportunities to improve connections to Stansted and Cambridge from Liverpool Street, findings of which are expected in spring 2016,” the newspaper reported.
Stansted owner Manchester Airports Group has been lobbying for changes that could halve journey times to and from central London, which currently take at least 45 minutes.
A spokesman for the airport said: “Stansted has spare runway capacity and significant room to grow.
“It is vital that faster rail services are delivered between London and Stansted.”
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