TfL snuck out a press release yesterday in which they announced several additional weekend closures on the Jubilee line later this year. They hid the details well by cramming them into a footnote, preferring instead to highlight why this interminable series of shutdowns is necessary. Better signalling, faster journeys, more frequent trains... it sounds like 2010 is going to be Jubilee heaven. But for the remainder of 2009, weekends are going to be Jubilee hell.
The list of closures in TfL's press release is incredibly difficult to follow. Plus they've only mentioned the additional line closures and not the existing ones, so it's nigh impossible to get an overall feel for how much disruption there's going to be, and when, and where. And there's a lot. So I've had a go at collating all the relevantinformation myself.
Here's a table showing every weekend closure on the Jubilee line for the six months from June to November. Each pair of columns represents a weekend, and grey shading means the line's closed. Grim, innit?
For example, over the weekend June 6/7 the Jubilee line is closed between Green Park and Stratford, while over the weekend November 28/29 it's closed between Stanmore and Waterloo. Saturday closures aren't always the same as Sunday. And there are two days when the closure isn't all day, so they're in slightly lighter grey.
If you live at the Docklands/Greenwich end of the line, then weekends look choked up until the middle of July. But after the summer holidays the disruptions disappear, and then it's plain sailing round to Stratford until the end of the year.
It's the northern end of the line where the relentless closures will hurt most. Most weekends until September, and then every single weekend from the top end downwards. If you live in Stanmore you're going to be bloody sick of rail replacement buses by Christmas. If that's not bad enough, there are also 19 days when the parallel stretch of the Metropolitan line will be shut down (between Harrow-on-the-Hill and Aldgate). I've marked these dates in purple, if you squint carefully enough.
We have contractors Tube Lines to blame for these extra closures, because they're not managing to complete this Jubilee re-signalling work as quickly as they initially promised. It will all be worth it in the end, honest, although these umpteen extra network shutdowns are absolutely nothing for TfL to crow about. All I can recommend is that Londoners make the most of Saturday 29th August, because that's the only weekend-day during the next six months when the entire Jubilee line will be running normally.