Business group slams Government over ignoring east London crossings

By Rob Virtue on December 4, 2013 12:41 PM |

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The Government launched its National Infrastructure Plan on Wednesday morning unveiling billions of pounds worth of investment.

But business representatives in the capital have said the lack of reference to east London river crossings is a missed opportunity.

The Government announcement revealed fresh capital from leading insurance firms into infrastructure to support funding for the Northern line extension to Battersea and connections to Gatwick, Stansted and Heathrow airports.

And Chancellor George Osborne revealed a £30million fund towards the proposed 'Garden Bridge' in Central London.

However, Colin Stanbridge, chief executive of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the group was "disappointed" the Government had failed "to reinforce the London Olympics regenerative legacy and specify new fixed river crossings in east London as a strategic infrastructure need".

He added: "The new Garden Bridge is welcome but will not solve problems of access and congestion in the east of the city.

"It is vital that government creates momentum - it can do this by ensuring swift publication of project implementation timelines to get 'spades-in-the-ground' sooner rather than later."

A host of MPs as well as East London firms including London City Airport have supported Transport for London's proposal for crossings at Silvertown and Gallions Reach, arguing they were imperative for business in the region.

However, environmentalists and residents groups have spoken out strongly about the schemes.

1 Comments

Anon said:

How is a river crossing supposed to help?

The roads are already gridlocked during rush hour. Adding river crossings will only add further pressure onto existing roads.

We have seen new roads, do not reduce congestion but create congestion.

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