Campaigners against the Silvertown Tunnel have this week called for a Judicial Review if Sadiq Khan goes ahead and signs a contract to build.
However at a meeting this week Greenwich Council leader Danny Thorpe showed little interest in backing such a move.
The authority have supported the tunnel for years with the ruling Labour group only asking for a pause with contract signing imminent.
The council recently wrote a letter to Sadiq Khan asking for a pause and to study other options, though it appears they’ve had no response. None was forthcoming at a council meeting this week when members of the public enquired into the issue.
A Guardian article today again quotes the Mayor’s spokesperson making some curious claims including the tunnel will “effectively eliminate congestion”.
The next line is cleverly worded: “As the number of cars is not expected to increase there is no forecast increase in carbon emissions”.
Note the use of cars there and not vehicles. Lorries are to be a main source of additional traffic with new lorry parks planned. HGVs are currently prevented from using Blackwall Tunnel.
According to TfL themselves, southbound traffic through Greenwich borough is due to rise 30 per cent upon opening in the evening peak period.
Is the mayor yet again only taking about east London which sees the biggest benefitsaccording to TfL traffic planning, while south east London loses out?
Supporters such as the Mayor really need calling out on this. Completely ignoring 30 per cent more traffic on the A2 southbound through Greenwich borough each evening – which already sees daily five mile queues from Falconwood through Eltham, Blackheath and Greenwich – is a massive warning sign.
TfL claim additional traffic will disperse onto the road network at various junctions.
That is to say junctions already at a standstill most evenings with vehicles feeding into the local area.
Given most existing junctions are full, can we expect new junctions and slip roads to be built? And if so, where? Yes, into the realms of speculation though show me a major road scheme with 30 per cent more vehicles that doesn’t have knock-on effects.
Beside the old Eltham Park station on Westmount Road lies an unused west-bound slip road. Could this be a new junction in the heart of Eltham with a slip road also built exiting the A2 and opening the existing slip road currently closed?
If 30 per cent more traffic is coming it’s far from unlikely. How this leafy part of Eltham would take that I’m not sure.
TfL state: “We are absolutely committed to ensuring that the project is delivered with minimal impact to local residents. We will be undertaking further modelling, monitoring and, if required, appropriate mitigation, of the effects of the scheme to ensure the outcomes are not materially worse than we forecast in our environmental statement.”
Is that mitigation to include additional junctions and road widening upon completion? As stated many a time, how else does 30 per cent more traffic enter onto a road network at capacity heading away from tunnels towards Kent?
Raising tolls to lower traffic would impact upon finances to repay to PFI loan deal about to be signed. They need the traffic.
Ah, but why spend so much on further road projects such as new slip roads when they need to pay back a PFI deal? Many reasons are possible. Different funding pots? The law of unintended consequence? It’s happened many times before.