The proposed London Garden Bridge has been given a financial boost with a £3M donation from banking firm Citigroup, which will also be its ‘official banking partner’.
The Thames crossing, which would link the capital’s South Bank to Temple station, is designed as a walk through a wooded park, with flowers, shrubs and trees.
A planning application for the £175M project was submitted in June, with approval anticipated in early October.
London 2012 opening ceremony cauldron designer Thomas Heatherwick masterminded the bridge. Arup worked as a consultant on the designs.
The Garden Bridge Trust, the charity driving the project, said it would begin building the crossing in spring 2015 if it received planning permission and raised enough money.
Citi’s donation will help cover running costs of the trust until the bridge opens to the public, which is planned for 2018. It is providing banking services and financing advice and will also partner with the trust to raise further donations through its network of international corporate and private clients and staff fundraising activity.
James Bardrick, head of Citigroup in UK said: “We believe The Garden Bridge is a fantastic example of innovative city thinking that will help keep London at the forefront, enhancing quality of life and stimulating tourism and regeneration. It is a project that will make a meaningful difference to London and the UK and we’re proud to be playing our part in getting this wonderful bridge built.”