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King's Cross ticket hall set for reprieve

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TRANSPORT MINISTERS were this week understood to be ready to back construction of the £250M northern ticket hall at King's Cross Underground station in London after initially shelving the project.

A senior Transport for London (TfL) offi cial last week indicated that he believed a decision to back the scheme was imminent.

The project is claimed to be vital to London's chances of winning the bid to host the 2012 Olympics.

It will provide an essential connection between the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) terminal at St Pancras and the nearby Underground.

Speaking at a transport debate at the ICE last week, Transport for London Olympic transport project director Hugh Sumner said he was 'relaxed' about the issue.

He said he was 'confident' that the go-ahead for the project would be in place by the time International Olympic Committee members visit London to assess its bid on 16 February.

The project was shelved in 2003 amid fears about spiralling costs.

The northern ticket hall is seen as critical to the success of the high speed Javelin train service which will run on the CTRL between St Pancras and the Olympic park.

This is expected to carry 250,000 people a day during the 2012 games, although congestion at King's Cross Underground could hit passenger numbers.

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