Reducing use of escalators on the London Underground

Questions to the Mayor of London – answered on 11th July 2019.

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Photo of Caroline Pidgeon Caroline Pidgeon Liberal Democrat

While recognising the vital importance of escalators for most parts of the day has TfL given any consideration as to whether energy reductions could be made by reducing the third escalator at times when passenger numbers are low?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

Yes. In line with Transport for London’s (TfL) Energy Strategy, London Underground is working to implement station energy plans that identify ways to reduce energy consumption.

Where we have more than two escalators and operations allow, station staff currently switch off the additional escalator(s) during quiet periods.

TfL will shortly launch a trial where local station teams will extend the escalator resting time at suitable locations, to reduce energy consumption further. Posters by resting escalators will explain to customers that TfL is taking this measure to reduce its carbon footprint.

In addition, as part of TfL’s escalator renewal programme, more efficient motors are being installed across the network. TfL’s newest escalators can also be placed into Economy Mode, which automatically slows them down when they are not being used.