FOI request detail

Bakerloo Line Extention (BLE)

Request ID: FOI-2520-1920
Date published: 13 December 2019

You asked

- The benefits and harmful economic impacts of BLE including but not limited to assessments, reports and financial appraisals - The siting of a tunnelling worksite at the New Cross Gate Sainsbury's Retail Park Site

We answered

TfL Ref: FOI-2520-1920

Thank you for your request of 14th November 2019 (subsequently clarified on 28th November 2019) asking for information about the Bakerloo Line Extension.

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our information access policy.

Specifically you asked:

We request pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 in respect of Transport for London’s (“TfL”) proposed Bakerloo Line Extension (“BLE”) copies of the following held by TfL:

· Assessments, reports and financial appraisals on the beneficial and harmful economic impacts (including but not limited to retail, employment and housing impacts) of BLE and all correspondence (being both internal and external TfL correspondence),meeting papers and minutes and presentations referring to such assessments, reports and financial appraisals; and

· Assessments, reports, financial appraisals, correspondence (being both internal and external TfL correspondence), meeting papers and minutes and presentations referring to the siting of a tunnelling worksite at the New Cross Gate Sainsbury’s Retail Park site.

The date range for this requested information is from 1 January 2016 until the date of this request.

I can confirm that we hold information in relation to your request. However, we estimate that to provide it all would exceed the ‘appropriate limit’ of £450 for responding to FOI cases. Under section 12 of the FOI Act we are not obliged to comply with a request if we estimate that the cost of determining whether we hold the information, and then locating, retrieving or extracting it from other information, would exceed the appropriate limit. This is calculated at £25 per hour for every hour spent on the activities described – equivalent to 18 hours work.

There is no easy way for us to source all of the information covered in your request. Your requests for “all correspondence (being both internal and external TfL correspondence)” are particularly burdensome as there is no simple way for us to source all such material. We have identified a list of 13 staff who have worked on/engaged with this project and who are the most likely to hold correspondence within the scope of the request. We have conducted an automated search of their emails for the period in question (January 1st 2016 to the present day) using relevant keywords. This has returned approximately 4,000 hits. In order to collate those that do and do not fall within the scope of your request we would need to review every one of these items. This would need to be achieved at a rate of one item every 16.2 seconds (64,800 seconds divided by 4000 items). We do not believe this is realistic. Furthermore, this is only one element of your request. To source all of the other requested information would take longer still.

To help bring the cost of responding to your request within the £450 limit, you may wish to consider narrowing or reframing its scope so that we can more easily locate, retrieve and extract the information you are seeking, to focus more specifically on the information that is of most importance to you. Should you choose to revise your request I would suggest once again that you take into account the guidance from the Information Commissioner on how best to access information from a public body that can be found on its website here:

In particular, I would point you towards the table of “Dos and Don’ts” found halfway down that page, which suggests that applicants should not “send catch-all requests (such as ‘please provide me with everything you hold about ‘x’)” nor “deliberately fish for information” by submitting a very broad request.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.

Yours sincerely,

David Wells

FOI Case Officer

FOI Case Management Team

General Counsel

Transport for London

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