Select Committee on the Crossrail Bill Minutes of Evidence

Examination of Witnesses (Questions 1200 - 1219)

  1200. Can I suggest that you go and get a piece of luggage and a buggy and you go to Maryland and see whether you can get from the road into the station and then down to the platform and do the reverse and see whether in fact it is not easier, if in fact you only have to do half of it.
  (Mr Berryman) I was actually at Maryland on Sunday, so I have it fresh in my mind. Of course it is more inconvenient to carry a piece of luggage up the four, five or six steps onto the concourse, but that is very small compared to the difficulty of getting up and down the stairs from the station. I am afraid, one of the points I was going to make earlier was that we are becoming a nation of luggage-carriers. I do not know if you have noticed, but on the Underground I notice all the time now that nearly everybody seems to have a substantial piece of luggage with them, and the Underground is not step-free.


  1202. CHAIRMAN: Ms Lieven, is this a good moment for us to adjourn for a short time?

  1203. MS LIEVEN: Yes, absolutely, my Lord.

  1204. CHAIRMAN: We will come back at 12 o'clock.

After a short break

  1205. CHAIRMAN: Ms Lieven, do you have anything further for Mr Berryman?

  1206. MS LIEVEN: No, my Lord.

  1207. CHAIRMAN: Very well, Mr Reed. All the other Petitioners today have settled and that gives you more time than might otherwise have been the case, but it does not give you unlimited time.

  1208. MR REED: I will certainly be guided by your Lordship as to whether or not any of my questions do not assist your Lordships, in which case I will move on, so that will hopefully shorten matters.

Cross-examined by MR REED

  1209. MR REED: Mr Berryman, can I ask you please to take up Information Paper E5, if you will.[25] There we see the criteria, which we looked at yesterday with Dr Maynard, in relation to whether a decision or how a decision should be reached to upgrade an existing station, do we not?

  (Mr Berryman) Yes.

  1210. The criteria, just looking in a little more detail from yesterday: the first is predicted passenger numbers at the station; the second is the capital cost to upgrade to step-free and the distance to the nearest accessible station, two separate issues; and then the Promoters have also taken into account the incidence of disability in the population surrounding the station.
  (Mr Berryman) Yes.

  1211. I have assumed, Mr Berryman, that you have had a hand in the production of this document as well.
  (Mr Berryman) It has been prepared under my supervision, although I did not personally write it.

  1212. The last of those criteria is a criterion that you agreed with, namely the incidence of disability in the population surround the station.
  (Mr Berryman) In general terms, yes.

  1213. Because what I want to be clear with you about is that, when looking at those four criteria, each one has importance.
  (Mr Berryman) That is right.

  1214. Just to be clear as to what has actually been done in respect of the decision to upgrade or not upgrade a particular station, there has been no cost-benefit analysis, correct?
  (Mr Berryman) There has not been a conventional cost-benefit analysis. What there has been is a comparison of the ratio of costs to the number of people that we think would benefit from a particular facility. If you did, as I think Dr Maynard explained yesterday, a conventional cost-benefit analysis on any of these PRM accessibility numbers, it would unfortunately prove to be quite negative and would indicate that nothing should be done at all. For that reason, conventional cost-benefit analysis is not normally done on this kind of facility; it is more of a valued judgment of what is the appropriate way of dealing with it.

  1215. I understand, because we had a note a little while ago that told us, that there was a business case undertaken by Crossrail, and we have seen the reference, 5.5 on the third page?[26]

  (Mr Berryman) That is right.

  1216. Now did I understand you correctly, when you answered me firstly, that there was a specific assessment done as to whether to upgrade any particular existing station? Did I understand that correctly?
  (Mr Berryman) Yes, that is right, yes.

  1217. Do I understand it correctly, then, that there was an analysis based on what has been phrased a "business case" to reach a decision as to whether to upgrade?
  (Mr Berryman) No, not on an individual station basis. As I say, there is no business case in the conventional sense for upgrading stations to provide PRM accessibility. A conventional business case relies on the income supporting the investment, and clearly the investment that is required in some cases is very much larger than the income could support from those passengers. As I said earlier on, it is based on more of a valued judgment as to how important it is to deal with all sectors of the community and be inclusive for everyone, and then making the best use of funds that we can within those parameters.

  1218. Could you turn to the second page of the document that we had earlier on, 4.3, "What does the Crossrail business case assume?" 4.3 says, after dealing with the proportion of total step free journeys, "This is turned into revenue by applying the average trip length and fare and the social benefits are derived from assuming a standard benefit:revenue relationship."[27] Is that what was undertaken to reach a conclusion as to whether to upgrade a particular station or not?

  (Mr Berryman) No, it was not. What that is related to is the overall business case for the Crossrail project. Obviously we want to make sure we have mobilised all the business benefits so, even though those benefits might not be sufficient to justify investment in a particular piece of kit, we do need to know what they are so they can be put into the equation of the overall project. If I take you away, perhaps, from the specific examples of Manor Park and Maryland, in some of the Underground stations the additional costs of providing step-free access can be very substantial, they are an integral and intrinsic part of the scheme, so when we are analysing the whole scheme we need to look at the whole benefits they bring, even though we know they are insufficient to justify the works on an individual basis that we are providing.

  1219. We looked earlier on at Information Paper E5; you took into account certain criteria when reaching the conclusion as to whether to upgrade an existing station, that is right, is it not?
  (Mr Berryman) Yes.

25   Crossrail Information Paper E5-Provisions for People with Reduced Mobility, p1, (LINEWD-IPE5-002) Back

26   Crossrail Ref P12, Passengers with Restricted Mobility, 26 February 2008 (SCN-20080227-012) Back

27   Crossrail Ref P12, Passengers with Restricted Mobility, 26 February 2008 (SCN-20080227-011) Back

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