Improving the DLR

New DLR trains are helping to make journeys brighter

We're determined to give more Londoners access to greener journeys. That is why we're improving the DLR network to make journeys in London brighter for everyone.

The DLR is the busiest light railway in the UK. It operates across 6 opportunity areas in London which together have the potential to provide more than 124,000 homes and 200,000 jobs.

new dlr train

New trains

We're introducing 54 new trains to replace the 33 oldest trains in our fleet, some of which are more than 30 years old. Our order for 11 of the extra trains was funded by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

The new trains will help us to improve the frequency and reliability of services and support population and employment growth across the network, particularly in parts of the Royal Docks and the Isle of Dogs where the DLR is the main transport option.


We'll start introducing the new trains in 2024, with the whole fleet in place by 2026.

Features include:

  • Spacious walk-through carriages
  • Live travel information
  • Air conditioning
  • Improved accessibility features
  • Mobile device charging points

The first of the new trains arrived at Beckton depot in January 2023. They're being tested and integrated with the DLR's signalling system to ensure they're reliable when they come into service.

Other works at Beckton and Poplar depots and on the rest of the network are required to prepare for the new fleet. Alongside routine track and infrastructure maintenance, we are upgrading our power and communications systems across the network during engineering hours and closures.

Planned closures in 2023

We'll do everything we can to minimise disruption to customers, but on some weekends we'll need to close sections of the railway to finish the DLR upgrade work. We apologise for any inconvenience. The closures for the next few months are published on our planned line closures and service changes page.

The next weekends are:

Saturday 14 October - Sunday 15 October

  • West Ham to Woolwich Arsenal: Essential maintenance

Sunday 22 October

  • Poplar to Beckton and Woolwich Arsenal to Stratford International: New train testing

Saturday 4 November - Sunday 5 November

  • Canning Town to Stratford International: Essential maintenance

Saturday 18 November - Sunday 19 November

  • Bank to Lewisham, Tower Gateway to Canning Town, Stratford to Canary Wharf: New train testing

Saturday 2 December - Sunday 3 December 

  • Poplar to Beckton and Woolwich Arsenal to Stratford International: New train testing

Saturday 9 December - Sunday 4 December 

  • Canning Town to Beckton: New train preparation work

Saturday 16 December - Sunday 17 December 

  • Canning Town to Woolwich Arsenal: New train preparation work

Construction at Beckton Depot

To get ready for the new trains, we're building a major extension to our depot at Beckton - this includes expanding the size of the depot and adding a new rail sidings. The main depot works started in 2021 and will finish in 2024.

Working hours

Works will usually take place:

  • Weekdays 08:00-18:00
  • Saturdays 08:00-13:00

We've agreed these times with the London Borough of Newham.


Although some noise is unavoidable during such works, our contractor will take all reasonably practicable measures to control it in line with the Control of Pollution Act 1974. We're a community railway and minimising disturbance to our neighbours is key.

Contact us if you have any concerns or questions about the programme of works:

DLR timetable

A new DLR timetable started on Monday 15 May 2023, bringing more frequent services and reduced waiting times across the entire DLR network. These improvements build on the enhancements we made to the DLR timetable in September 2022. 

Bank station improvements

In late 2022, we opened brand new escalators to directly link the Northern line platforms with the DLR at Bank station.

Early in 2023, we added a new entrance to Bank station on Cannon Street, and a lift connection from here will link customers with the DLR. The new lift makes travel through Bank station easier and more reliable.

Escalators at Cutty Sark

We're refurbishing all escalators at Cutty Sark station. After taking over management of this station in 2021 from an external contractor we developed a plan to refurbish the escalators. We've since discovered that the condition of the escalators was worse than expected, meaning they need to be entirely rebuilt, including manufacturing custom- built parts. We have completed 2 out of 4 escalators which are in service and for the remaining 2 escalators we have pre- ordered parts - a lesson learnt from the project.

Access to the station is currently by 3 operational escalators, 2 refurbished and 1 operational, and stairs, and a limited step- free lift.

We're improving the ambience throughout the station, working closely with local stakeholders such as Visit Greenwich to produce artwork installations to make the Cutty Sark station a more welcoming environment. We've also added a more frequent cleaning regime to ensure the station is kept clean for customers throughout the improvement works.

We're sorry if this work causes you any inconvenience. We regularly review our communications to ensure we provide the most up to date information.

North Quay

We're working closely with Canary Wharf Group to support the development of the North Quay, alongside the Elizabeth line Canary Wharf station. This will mean improved access to West India Quay station and a new connection from Poplar station directly into the Canary Wharf estate, improving connections with City Airport, ExCeL and more.

These improvements will begin from 2024.