Rubber “noise dimming” rail tracks will have to be installed on parts of the £16bn Crossrail scheme after businesses and residents on the route complained about noise.
Floating slab track, which is the most expensive type of rail track and costs £467 per metre more than standard track, will have to be installed across 4.17km of the route. This will add about £2m to the cost of the rail.
Residents and local businesses affected by the project complained about noise and vibration levels during the Crossrail Bill’s petition period in parliament. As a result, Crossrail has agreed to use the noise-dimming tracks in specific areas.
The slab track will be laid underneath Soho, the Barbican Hall and Bow in east London. A Crossrail spokesperson said other areas were still under discussion, but a decision depended on the final design details.
The project team said the extra cost was included in the Crossrail budget. “We are not prepared to say how much the tracks will cost at this point, but it is nothing compared with £16bn,” a Crossrail source said.
An industry specialist said: “Slab track reduces the noise by about 30-35dB. It was last used in the UK in 1996 on the tube.”
The Crossrail Bill is passing through the House of Lords. The petition period ended last week with 113 documents submitted.