Big Canary Wharf changes coming with major middle dock work underway

Work to change the face of a large area in the heart of Canary Wharf is now in full swing.

Plans for substantial changes both around and on the middle dock were submitted in 2022 and approved last year, with the area set to see “the creation of a green spine through the centre of the Estate with additional green public realm, parks and gardens, waterside access and performance spaces.”

Render of completed scheme courtesy Canary Wharf

Work is now underway in a number of places across a pretty wide area with people able to enjoy some of the improvements from this summer.

The below image was taken last week showing the future stepped area leading down to the dock being assembled directly in front of the Jubilee line station.

Expanded space at Jubilee Plaza

A new pedestrian crossing across the dock is set to be installed near an area for public swimming.

Note too that a public space is also set for expansion along the north side of the dock.

Approved plan

That can start to be seen in the below image with the new dock bridge set for installation to the left of the DLR tracks.

Looking toward Canary Wharf DLR station

Much of the work appears to be underway further west before being moved into place sometime this summer.

Pontoons and floating islands are located here before moving to their final location.

Slotted together before moving to other end of dock

Canary Wharf have a page on the project here with it showing new public space and a performance space beside the Jubilee line station.

Consultation was undertaken two years ago in May 2022 with subsequent changes reducing the amount of dock covered over.

Temporary location

The proposed changes will “also allow for water sports such as paddle-boarding and kayaking”.

An area for swimming in also proposed following the ability of open-air swimming last year.

Building over docks

Whilst some of the dock will be covered the “middle dock greening project” at least intends to draw people towards to water and make an asset of it.

Preparatory work underway

This appears a belated recognition to make more of the assets the area possesses.

That’s something where the estate doesn’t have the best record. Some pretty grim structures have swallowed dock space in the past.

One such example being this below on Middle Dock.

Part of middle dock covered

Head to the South Dock and this 1980s turd squats on the dock further limiting the footprint of the dock and obscuring views for pedestrians across the area.

South Dock

While wandering around taking photos for this post this encapsulated the problem. This could – and should – be a nice view across the water towards the Thames.

Yet it’s almost entirely blocked.

View east blocked

The new extension of Canary Wharf into Wood Wharf has also seen further areas of the dock covered.

This is a recent example of swallowing up space.

Hawksmore

As the below view shows, Hawksmoor covers a substantial body of water.

Dock view greatly changes

Some better results can be seen at the waterside at the edge of Wood Wharf. A dockside area of public space with benches and greenery is extremely popular.

This area also sees proposed plans for a new bridge linking either side of south dock. They’ve been around for many years and still slowly trundling their way towards construction.

Upon completion it will offer a quicker link between Canary Wharf and Marsh Wall as well as South Quay DLR station.

Further north and with work in full swing the middle dock project should start to see greater public space opening up this year. It should all be complete by 2025.

 

 

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J Smith

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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