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West Drayton Station taxi rank ‘not a priority’ as Mayor of London confirms foot, bike and bus push

Transport for London’s (TfL) push for ‘sustainable travel’ via foot, bike and bus means that a taxi rank at the new Elizabeth Line West Drayton Station was ‘not a priority within the design’.

The reasons for a lack of taxi rank that would assist the public with mobility needs and heavy luggage travelling in and out of Heathrow, came to light when London Assembly Member, Caroline Pidgeon, questioned the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, about the absence of taxi facilities at the station.

Pidgeon's inquiry sought clarification on the conversations held between the Mayor's office and Hillingdon Council regarding the provision of essential facilities such as a taxi rank and bike stands at the Elizabeth line station. In response, Sadiq Khan explained that the improvements to the West Drayton station were funded by TfL and were part of the Crossrail Complementary Measures Programme, which was executed by the London Borough of Hillingdon on Network Rail-owned land.

However, the primary focus of this initiative, according to Khan, was to encourage sustainable modes of travel such as walking, cycling, and buses. Consequently, the inclusion of a new taxi rank was not considered a priority within the station's design due to both the objective of promoting sustainable travel and the limitations of available space.

While TfL's commitment to sustainable travel is commendable, concerns have been raised about the potential inconvenience faced by travellers who rely on taxi services making the initial or finally part of their combined journeys.

Critics argue that balance should be struck between promoting sustainable travel and providing adequate options for those who rely on taxis for various reasons, including individuals with mobility challenges and those carrying heavy luggage.

All new London taxis licensed with TfL must be Zero Emissions Capable (ZEC), wheelchair accessible and can cost drivers around £100,000 on finance packages to buy.

Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, said: “Improvements to the Elizabeth line interchange at West Drayton station are funded by Transport for London (TfL) from its Crossrail Complementary Measures Programme, designed and delivered by the London Borough of Hillingdon on Network Rail-owned land.

“This programme focuses on encouraging sustainable travel to and from the station on foot, by cycle or bus. This objective – as well as the space constraints at the station – means that new taxi ranks were not a priority within the design.

“TfL is committed to supporting active travel journeys and the borough will be introducing 22 additional cycling parking spaces as part of its forecourt works alongside improved accessibility for pedestrians.

“There is the opportunity for easy taxi pick-ups and drop offs from the Warwick Road station entrance. Network Rail is working on fixing the collapsed sewer on Station Approach to enable bus services to recommence their services directly to the station.”


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