A deal to finance the long-awaited Crossrail line across central London is ‘still not certain’, Treasury sources said yesterday. The Sunday Times. Financial Times

The Sunday Times reported that Gordon Brown is poised to give the go-ahead to Crossrail, the most ambitious British transport project since the Channel tunnel.

However, a Treasury source told the Financial Times that chancellor Alistair Darling was waiting for partners in the private sector and others to ‘come up with their contribution’.

An announcement is still expected shortly, but Darling’s team is not clear whether an agreement can be reached before next week’s Labour conference in Bournemouth.

The funding of Crossrail is tied to the introduction of the controversial supplementary business rate that will allow councils to levy additional tax to pay for specific projects. Councils will be able to borrow against the future business-rate revenues.