London mayor Boris Johnson has made a commitment to move road infrastructure underground during a visit to the US city of Boston’s Big Dig scheme which moved major routes into tunnels.
“Rebuilding some of our complex and aging road network underneath our city would not only provide additional capacity for traffic, but it would also unlock surface space and reduce the impact of noise and pollution,” said Johnson.
“I am inspired by what the ambitious people of Boston have achieved here at the Big Dig, both in terms of reducing congestion and how they have dramatically improved the quality of life on the surface. In London we face similar challenges on our roads, but this could also be a fantastic opportunity to better shape our city and support economic growth.”
Projects identified by Johnson for a similar solution include replacing the Hammersmith Flyover with a “flyunder”, which has been promoted by CH2M Hill and Hammersmith Borough Council.
Transport for London will now work with local boroughs on the proposals and an analysis including funding options will be presented to the mayor in May.
Five sites targeted by Boris Johnson’s new tunnel vision:
- A13 in Barking - mini-tunnel to open up new land for development and reconnect the borough of Barking with the new Barking Riverside development
- A3 in Tolworth - decking (building over the road and roundabout) to connect borough to the new Crossrail 2 station
- A316 at Chalker’s Corner, Richmond - small flyunder to improve facilities for cyclists and pedestrian and remove a major traffic pinch point
- A4 in Hammersmith- replacing flyover with a flyunder and re-connect town centre with river.
- A406 in New Southgate - decking or mini-tunnel to unlock land for new homes and connect the area to the proposed Crossrail 2 station