22/05/2017 16:28 BST

Crossrail Route Takes Shape On Screen In 'The Fifteen Billion Pound Railway'

It's a race against time to complete the new route.

The final preparations for the opening of London’s new Crossrail route is being revealed in a new documentary.

BBC Two’s The Fifteen Billion Pound Railway: The Final Countdown follows engineers and construction workers on the new route across London.

The first section of the Elizabeth Line between Liverpool Street and Shenfield has already opened, albeit under the branding of TFL Rail.

PA Archive/PA Images
The countdown is on to the opening of the new Crossrail route

The documentary follows those responsible for making sure the trains are able to run according to schedule - but the clock is ticking as the rollout of the new trains for the line is set to begin this month.

The two-part series, which airs at 9pm on Monday 22 and 29 May, features footage of the works digging the tunnels, laying the platforms and making sure stations are ready for what could be London’s most complex construction project to date.

We take a look at everything you need to know about the new route...

What does the Crossrail route map look like?

Click here for a bigger version
Click here for a bigger version
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When does Crossrail open?

May 2017: The first new train enters passenger service.

May 2018: TfL Rail service opens between Paddington (National Rail) and Heathrow Terminal 4, replacing the existing Heathrow Connect service and part of the Great Western inner suburban service.

December 2018: The Elizabeth line opens between Paddington and Abbey Wood.

May 2019: The Elizabeth line extends from Shenfield to Paddington.

December 2019: The Elizabeth line is fully open, extending to Reading and Heathrow Terminal 4.

What will the new Crossrail stations look like?

The new stations have a far more futuristic feel compared to traditional Tube stations.

An artist's impression of the new station at Bond Street
The new Crossrail station at Paddington

Click here for a look at full set of pictures of the new stations.

What will the new Crossrail trains look like?

The fleet of 66 Class 345 trains, built by Bombardier in Derby, will begin operating on the route from May 2017.

Here’s a sneak peek of what they look like...

PA Archive/PA Images
A new train developed for the Crossrail project

How often will trains run?

Crossrail has produced this guide on how frequently services will run:


Why is it called the Elizabeth Line?

The new route has been named after our very own Queen Elizabeth.

It is actually the second subterranean line to be named after her, the first being the Jubilee Line in honour of her silver jubilee in 1977.