The underground network will operate up to an hour later on Fridays and Saturdays beginning in 2015. The success of later services during the Olympics last summer prompted the plans.
“The Tube is the artery of London and we want to make the city’s heart beat strongly and later on into the night, TfL executive Mike Brown said to the Evening Standard.
“‘It will be a real benefit for London’s night-time economy, either for people working late or enjoying themselves.
“If people want to buy that extra meal, cup of coffee or pint of beer, why wouldn’t we want to encourage that?”
Brown did say that as the world’s oldest underground system, the tube was not built for 24-hour service. He also said that extra fare revenue brought in from the after-hours service would fund the operation and rejected any transport union concerns.
“We would negotiate pay for extra hours as a permanent fixture but I’m sure they would welcome the prospect of earning some more money”, he said.
Aslef, a train drivers’ union, said “We would also look at sensible proposals but there are some tough negotiations ahead”.
The services will start with a core network of routes from north-to-south and east-to-west with links to the night bus network.
The extended hours are possible after updates modernised the Victoria, Jubilee and Northern lines. Upgrades are planned to improve the District, Circle, Metropolitan and Hammersmith & City lines.
However, Brown said to the Evening Standard that a £12 billion lack of funds will prevent the completion of line upgrades. There won’t be any extended service on the Piccadilly Line.
“You need paramedic-style maintenance to keep the thing running”, he said. “Every hour trains are not running you need to be in there picking up failures that might be about to happen.”
The last Victoria train currently leaves from Oxford Circus at 12.40 am on Saturdays and Sundays, which also happens to be the same time the last Northern line train from Leicester Square leaves.
The only downside? You’ll no longer be able to use the early tube as an excuse to leave parties. You now have just less than two years to think of believable cop-outs.
Image via Getty