‘Trio’ of tube reforms could create £839m fares reduction pot by 2020

Transport bosses need to embark on large scale programme of attracting businesses to London’s closed tube stations, according to GLA Conservative Gareth Bacon.

New figures released before City Hall’s regeneration committee show an extra £23m can be raised by 2020 if ticket offices are turned into retail space¹.

As part of a trio of essential tube reforms including fast tracking driverless trains and scrapping free travel passes for flatmates of TfL staff, a fares reduction pot of some £839m could be created in 5 years.²

It costs £34m to reduce fares by 1% for one year.

Speaking before the meeting, GLA Conservative budget spokesman, Gareth Bacon, said:

“We need to constantly look for new ways to raise revenue and save money. Redundant ticket offices can become the next destination for thriving retail activity. If just two-thirds of the Capital’s 300 tube ticket offices are taken over by businesses, we can raise some £23m in rentals over the next five years. I urge TfL to get serious about attracting businesses to our tube through a large scale programme. Add this to other common sense policies such as introducing sponsorship on the tube, fast-tracking driverless trains, and scrapping free ‘nominee’ travel passes for staff flatmates, and we can amass a substantial pot of cash which can be used to help reduce fares.”

Gareth Bacon will put the figures to Isabel Dedring, Deputy Mayor for Transport, at today’s City Hall regeneration committee from 2pm.

¹ According to correspondence from TfL, 1,000 retail units within tube stations generating some £23m a year in rental income. If just two-thirds of the 300 ticket offices planned for closure, became retail units, 4.6m per year would be generated, totalling some £23m over the next 5 year period to 2020.
² As part of an ongoing campaign, Gareth Bacon has proposed costed proposals to lower passenger fares including; Fast tracking driverless trains on the underground (£141m per year savings) and scrapping free ‘nominee’ travel passes gifted to flatmates and lodgers of TfL staff (£22m per year savings).