London Mayor Sadiq Khan has set out plans for three new river crossings to be built in the next five to 10 years in East London.
The package includes updated plans for the Silvertown Tunnel, as well as an acceleration of the planned pedestrian and cycle bridge linking Rotherhithe to Canary Wharf, and a DLR crossing at Gallions Reach.
The plans also include further assessment work for a Barking Riverside to Abbey Wood London Overground crossing, as well as further assessment of a North Greenwich to Isle of Dogs ferry.
“It’s no secret that London has long needed more river crossings in the east. With new homes and economic growth across East London, it becomes even more important that we deliver new greener transport links that allow Londoners to cross the river quickly and more easily,” said Khan.
“But we don’t want these to have a damaging impact on our environment, and that’s why I’ve reviewed and improved plans for Silvertown Tunnel and why I’m pushing forward with crossings that encourage public transport, walking and cycling.
“As we continue to unlock the massive economic potential of East London, we must secure the very best transport infrastructure that improves the quality of life for everyone living and working in the area.”
The scheme for the Silvertown Tunnel, which is planned to open in 2023, includes a user charge. A six-month public examination into the plans will start next week. To make it more environmentally friendly, the tunnel will be a low emission bus zone and potentially have a bespoke cycle-bus to carry cyclists and their bikes through the tunnel. In addition, during the construction period at least 55% of all material must be carried by river.
Atkins has been commissioned to carry out the reference design for the Silvertown Tunnel that proposes two 11.45m internal diameter bores, each around 1km long, with two traffic lanes per bore and connecting cross-passages. There would be cut-and-cover approaches at Greenwich and Silvertown.
The new cycle bridge linking Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf will need to open for shipping and Transport for London (TfL) has been looking into whether a bascule or swing style bridge would be more suitable. The procurement process for construction will be held next year.
TfL said that most of the funding for these projects will come through developer contributions and existing Community Infrastructure Levies.
“London’s population continues to grow and it’s vital that we do everything we can to support this to ensure that everyone can continue to move around freely and easily. The mayor’s new vision for river crossings in East London is firmly rooted in supporting growth and providing better public transport links for all,” said TfL acting managing director of planning Alex Williams.
“We will now work hard to develop the designs for these new crossings, as well as identify potential funding opportunities, to allow them to be constructed more quickly.”