Post by norbitonflyer on Jan 30, 2016 16:57:44 GMT
During a long term shutdown people find alternative routes. Some of them discover alternatives that actually turn out to be better, and don't return. So it may take time for numbers to pick up again and the two cars might cope for a short while. Especially as the work is expected to finish just before the summer, when peak hour travelling is a bit less busy.
But yes, damned if you do. I can see the press giving TfL a rough time if any of the following happen
The 172s sit around idle for the duration of the works
The 172s find other employment during the works, and are no longer available when the line re-opens, so the passenger service has to reopen with something older (diesel or electric) until the 710s are avaialable.
The 172s come back - disappointment for Goblin users (who were expecting more) and for whoever had the benefit of them in the short term
TfL doesn't make a big noise about exactly when the wiring is energised, but wait until new trains are ready to use it - and as a result some trespasser gets electrocuted.
The 710s are rushed into service before they have gained enough running in time
The wiring runs late, and the 710s have to sit around idle until the wires are ready.
If you're desperate to get electric trains to the Goblin, could 378s (temporarily returned to 3 or 4 car format) be used on the Goblin? Where do you find 378s? Well, you could redeploy them from the WLL, which could run a shuttle with 313s, 350s or 377s (all of which have been used on the WLL in the past). Or, maybe run 172s in pairs on the Wat-Eus line to release some 378s for the Goblin.
You don't even need a big bang - you can launch with a mix of diesel and electric, maybe running 4-car class 172 formations on the remaining diagrams as the electrics are phased in.