TfL reject plans to switch Woolwich Arsenal station to zone 3

Transport for London have rejected plans for re-zoning Woolwich Arsenal station from Zone 4 to Zone 3/4 when Crossrail arrives. A petition had been created to do so and local politicians had been supportive.

Most stations directly north, and an equal distance from central London, are in Zone 3. The recent rezoning of Stratford from Zone 3 to Zone 2/3 offered some hope.

The only DLR station in Zone 4

It’s not entirely surprising given TfL’s finances are extremely stretched. George Osborne cut £700 million from their budget in one of his last acts as Chancellor in 2015. Subsequent chancellor Philip Hammond has done little to reverse that. The fare freeze initiated by Mayor Sadiq Khan also squeezed things further.

TfL give a cost of £5 million to rezone Woolwich Arsenal including the cost of having to compensate Southeastern. Transport Secretary Chris Grayling blocking TfL from running Southeastern suburban lines means this obstacle looks set to remain.

Still use the tube?

What this does do is give some poorer passengers little reason to switch from North Greenwich tube to Crossrail is heading to major areas of employment such as Canary Wharf, the City and West End.

Even those living in Woolwich itself may stick with the bus to North Greenwich then the Jubilee Line. By doing so they save over £600 a year on Travelcard costs if heading to central London.

That isn’t great news given a recent TfL consultation into bus service changes proposes cuts to buses heading for North Greenwich.

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I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

7 thoughts on “TfL reject plans to switch Woolwich Arsenal station to zone 3

  • Wasn’t it moved to Zone 4 to help pay for the DLR extension?

    • Woolwich Arsenal has been in Zone 4 at least since 1999. I haven’t been able to find older maps showing the NR lines in the TFL zones.

    • It’s been in Zone 4 (and the old zone 3b before that) since the zonal system was introduced in the 1980s. When buses had zones, the boundary was the bottom of Frances Street.

  • So I live in Woolwich so would obviously benefit from it being moved to Zone 3. But to be totally honest, I’ve always struggled with the logic that “Woolwich is/will be getting a much better/quicker service, therefore its residents should pay less than Plumstead residents”.

    If anything, it’s the residents in places with terrible transport connections that should be getting discounts!

    So selfishly it’s a shame, but I’m fine with TFL’s decision.

    • Selfishly, I’d like them to move Belvedere into Zone 4 so that I can go to the station closest to me rather than make a slightly longer journey to Abbey Wood in the mornings…. 🙂

    • Making Woolwich zone 3 would help also help all the people who bus in from the surrounding areas with worse transport infrastructure, such as Plumstead etc.

      With crossrail and DLR in there Woolwich is already a connecting station for many, and buses are the same price everywhere.

  • Interesting reply but there is reason to question the response I feel:

    Post Elizabeth Line introduction there is the question of how many of those commuters from Kent (or other areas) will change from southeastern to Crossrail at Abbey Wood (Zone 4) as opposed to onto DLR at Woolwich A – reducing the revenue loss impact from rezoning Woolwich A.
    Payments to SouthEastern to compensate for the change would not need to occur if it was made part of the DfT tender for the new operator due to start December 2018, coinciding with Crossrail opening.
    There is also a question of if the financial projections take account for the considerable future demand growth in the immediate and surrounding areas.

    The only time that this change can take place is seemingly December 2018, when the stars align for DfT and TFL in terms of contract renewal and new service introduction. In the event that both TfL and DfT see it not as an investment (which it ultimately would be) then Greenwich Council should consider paying the £5m out of it’s new build bonus which I believe was is excess of £15m last year. Ironically this would probably lead to an even bigger new build bonus pot from further development in the area, it also works well with the plans from Greenwich Council for a southbank rival….


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