Newham

Newham Council demands more transport investment in East London

25 October 2017 in Council and democracy and Environment
​Responding to the Mayor of London’s draft Transport Strategy consultation, Newham Council has:
  • Urged the Mayor and Transport for London to back an eastern branch extension to Crossrail 2
  • Demanded a commitment to further river crossings 
  • Criticised the draft strategy for a lack of clear funding.​
Newham Council has called for further investment in transport infrastructure across east London to ensure regeneration opportunities are maximised and the capital’s economy grows in its response to the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s and Transport for London’s (TfL) draft Transport Strategy.

The strategy is a document which sets out the current Mayor of London’s transport priorities durin​g his term of office. Londoners and local authorities were invited to provide feedback through a consultation on the draft strategy which ended earlier this month.

In its response, the council urged the mayor and the transport body to commit to an eastern branch extension to Crossrail 2 in line with recommendations from the National Infrastructure Commission.

The response also reiterated the calls for more public transport and road crossings over the River Thames east of Tower Bridge. It highlighted the lengthy planning processes for these large infrastructure projects and criticised proposals which would see further crossings delayed until current projects are completed.

The council suggests that slow progress towards either of these schemes risks the economic performance of London post-Brexit.

Deputy Mayor (statutory) Ken Clark and cabinet member for regeneration and planning said: “The current draft transport strategy does little to ensure that vital investment in east London’s transport network is delivered.

“Waiting until the Silvertown Tunnel is delivered before considering any further river crossings in east London is ludicrous. It means there would be no further crossings for at least another 20 years.

“As we prepare for Brexit, now, more than ever, it is essential that our transport network is robust enough to maximise the benefit of the regeneration which is already underway. Ensuring that we have a thriving London economy is vital, we cannot afford to be short-sighted now.”

The response calls for a “full and complete” review of Crossrail 2 to include an eastern branch with the potential to interchange with HS1 at Stratford. It also insists that planning for Crossrail 3 and 4 should begin now.

The Mayor of London’s strategy had suggested further crossings should be explored once the Silvertown Tunnel, Gallions Reach DLR crossing to Thamesmead, and the Lower Thames Crossing are delivered and assessed. As this is unlikely to be until 2025, at the earliest, Newham Council says this proposal is unacceptable and would hinder the economic benefits from planned regeneration projects in the area.

The response also criticised the lack of financial planning for the proposals in the draft strategy as well as the fact that consultation on the London Plan, which is another key planning document,  is not due to start until next month.