Silvertown tunnel’s northern portal above ground as construction underway

The northern entrance to Silvertown tunnel can now be made out as construction continues on the four-lane road tunnel under the Thames.

The site can be seen from the passing DLR on the Woolwich Arsenal branch, with the tunnel mouth now clearly visible alongside work on above ground structures.

Work on above ground structure underway. Tunnel exits here with road heading east to major new junction seen in next image below

One tunnel has already been dug by private consortium Riverlinx, with another set to begin soon.

There have now been calls on TfL to halt construction of the second tunnel by Greenwich Labour Council, though this about turn only happened after years of support and work was already underway.

Northern portal. Large amount of land needed for extensive new road network

Despite being long-term supporters, Greenwich Council and the borough’s residents will see few benefits in terms of public transport gains.

Of just two new bus routes planned, one is an express route starting in Grove Park that barely stops in Greenwich borough (see the dashed line in the below image) while another route is an extension of the 129 which currently runs from Lewisham to Greenwich peninsula.

Proposed bus routes. X239 all but skips most of Greenwich borough as it becomes an express route. 129 heads east away from areas in demand 

However, upon crossing the Thames the 129 will head east to new build developments rather than Canary Wharf and away from major areas of employment. It offers very little more than taking the DLR or changing to the Jubilee line at North Greenwich already does for the area.

The existing 108 is also mentioned in TfL’s consultation but of course is not a new route. The new fangled public transport benefits mostly fall away for many in the local area and those set to see additional traffic along the A2 and A102.

Silvertown tunnel will see additional traffic as two tunnels converge on existing road network in Greenwich

Major areas  south east London such as Kidbrooke, Eltham and Charlton, which could have benefitted from a direct bus to areas of employment and leisure like Canary Wharf and Stratford, will see no new route through the tunnel.


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I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

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