Transport for

Nichols has worked closely with Transport for London on some of its most important and iconic projects and programmes since it was established in 2000, and for two decades before that for London Underground and the Docklands Light Railway. We have consistently provided high profile strategic support and have won a prestigious Transport for London Best Supplier Award.


Transport for London (TfL) is the local government body responsible for implementing the Mayor’s Transport Strategy and for managing transport services across London. TfL is committed to maintaining and improving its vast infrastructure network and achieving the Mayor’s ambitious target to be a zero carbon city by 2050. TfL’s work is vital in keeping London moving and maintaining its status as a global capital.


We supported TfL’s High Speed 2 (HS2) sponsor team to establish a collaborative framework to align the priorities and objectives between the two organisations. With differing priorities and a complex supply chain of contractors it was essential to establish strong collaborative relationships and procedures ahead of HS2 main works delivery in London. This included establishing the ‘Blue Book’ joint ways of working between the organisations and their supply chains, developing a shared baseline for delivery and creating better alignment between organisations at all levels. This work has not only improved relationships and collaborative practices, it has also delivered time and cost efficiencies. The Programme was shortlisted for the Chartered Institute for Highways and Transportation’s 2020 Collaboration award.

Air Quality and Environment
Nichols led the sponsorship of the Air Quality, Environment and Technology portfolio of projects including high profile projects such as the expansion of the Ultra Low Emission Zone, the world leading Direct Vision Standard to revolutionise lorry safety and the roll out of body worn cameras for frontline staff.


Rail Operations
Over a five year period, we supported London Rail in taking responsibility for delivering the East London Line project from the Strategic Rail Authority. We helped bring the railway into operation by guiding the client through the complex accreditation process, developing the maintenance strategy, leading the procurement of the maintenance contract, and completing all third party agreements to enable operation. Following the success of this project, TfL has expanded their role as an overground rail operator and now manages a network of 112 stations across six routes.

Intelligent Clienting
TfL has been amongst the first major transport providers to recognise the importance of Intelligent Clienting and developing project and programme management capability in order to enhance delivery efficiency. Nichols has been advising and assisting in this capability for London Underground since 1980 and for TfL since 2003, using best practice from the wider project and programme management and infrastructure industries.

Commercial Development
As TfL’s business lead on the development of the Brent Cross shopping centre, Nichols worked in close collaboration with the London Borough of Barnet, the Greater London Authority and the Developers to enable the £4.5bn redevelopment of the area. We facilitated the concise definition of infrastructure requirements, brokered agreement of designs and delivery strategy, and established commercial agreements providing control for TfL’s strategic risks.

Ticketing and Project Delivery Innovation
Nichols supported TfL in the development, procurement, and implementation of the Oyster Card, the world-leading smart ticketing scheme that has revolutionised travel by public transport in London.

For the innovative Cooling the Tube programme, Nichols supported the Programme Director to create the strategic vision, establish a comprehensive execution plan and engage stakeholders through structured public relations and dedicated interface management teams. In addition, we led ‘trial’ projects covering both infrastructure and rolling stock.

Supporting London’s
iconic infrastructure

Programme Management and Controls
The TfL Programme Management Office required an Integrated Project Controls solution, which was sufficiently scalable and flexible to be applied across the organisation. Nichols undertook a requirements analysis and developed the business case for delivery. We introduced a fresh approach and were the guiding mind for the proposed solution; supporting the team in engaging with the TfL community and other stakeholders for the roll out of the new approach within the organisation. We developed the TfL Project Handbook covering all project controls related disciplines.

We developed TfL’s Corporate Gateway Assurance Process, and contributed to the creation and implementation of the Project Management Framework and ‘Pathway’: TfL’s project and programme management methodology. We have supported the development of TfL’s Commercial Centre of Excellence, improving organisational efficiency and effectiveness. This work was highly praised by the National Audit Office as a best-in-class example of a coherent change programme.

We led a strategic review of London Underground’s ability to deliver its £1.4bn annual capital expenditure programme. For more information on this work, please see TfL Capital Programmes Delivery Capability.


Over the many years we have been providing high profile strategic support to TfL, they have created new ways of delivering value to passengers and continued to lead the way in managing the major investments. These are necessary to maintain London’s pre-eminent position as a global financial centre and a place where people can enjoy living and working. Our continued engagement with TfL demonstrates our strategic value to the client and we are proud of the part we have played in TfL’s growing record of success.

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