Tomorrow’s Transport, Today


So you’re thinking about investing in property? Or perhaps you already hold a portfolio and are looking for the next buy. Whichever category you fall into, you obviously will be asking yourself that all-important question: where is the next hot spot?

Which up and coming area is going to give you the greatest return on your investment? Where can you buy that will ensure the arrow on the graph is only pointing up.

There are of course a lot of factors, from schools, to the type of property, but in London, it’s hard to deny that transport is one of, if not the, leading factor when it comes to where people want to live.

London has a slew of huge transport projects on the horizon, but easily the biggest and most public is the Crossrail development. A huge undertaking, this train line will bisect the capital cutting some journey times by up to 40-minutes and increase capacity on London’s transport network by up to 10%, a figure that will certainly appeal to anyone who’s spent their morning or evening commute in close proximity to a strangers armpit.

Another subsidiary benefit to the project will be an increase in house prices for those who own properties along the path of the Crossrail. In a report for Property Week, American commercial property company, CBRE says: ‘We anticipate total house price growth of 13% around Crossrail stations between now and 2018, with up to 20% in Central London. This is expected in addition to underlying capital growth.’ The report also states: ‘Overall, Crossrail could add around £14.7bn to the residential property sector across the 37 stations.’ Big numbers that only bolster the importance of buying a property with excellent transport links.

But the very public nature of Crossrail also means that the cheap property ship may well have sailed, or at least it has become the preserve of the very wealthy. So what other projects does London have up her sleeve, and where should you be looking to invest?→

“Crossrail could add around £14.7bn to the residential property sector across the 37 stations.”

In July, Mayor Boris Johnson outlined an ambitious plan to improve the capitals transport system called the ‘London Infrastructure Plan 2050’, the bill for which would hover around the fairly unimaginable £1.3trillion. To be fair the plan also includes housing, energy, digital connectivity and schools, but a large proportion of the proposals include transport projects.
Crossrails 2 and 3 are two of the most likely projects to get the nod. These monster projects will cut across the city from North to South, reducing peak morning capacity by up to 8%. Crossrail 1 could also be extended to Watford Junction.

One of the most interesting proposals is the development of Old Oak Common in West London, near Acton. The report describes how this area could become a ‘Canary Wharf of the future’ and host an Overground, Crossrail and HS2 station. Average house prices in the area currently sit at around £550,000.

Extensions of on the Bakerloo line and Overground line could rejuvenate the South East London from Old Kent Road to Catford, and Gospel Oak. There are new stations mooted for Cricklewood, beam Park and Thames Wharf.

Exciting times indeed, especially when there’s even talk of air conditioning on the tube. We can certainly dream!