Docklands drivers will find their car journey to work harder after the Silvertown Tunnel is built, says a leading Green Party member.
London Assembly member Darren Johnson says that the proposed £750million link will be of benefit to those south of the river at the expense of Royal Docks motorists.
Mr Johnson points out that TfL’s own documents as part of the public consultation say that in the morning rush hour “the reduction in accessible jobs in the borough is expected to be some 2%”.
“Increased throughput of traffic in the Silvertown area” would reduce “job accessibility” – a marker set by a car journey of under 45 minutes.
Mr Johnson said: “These revelations just go to show that the tunnel would be a reckless gamble with east London’s traffic that could end up having serious unintended consequences that blight the lives of ordinary people.
“I have asked the [Mayor of London Boris Johnson] to clarify exactly how many Newham residents could face a longer, more difficult journey to work if he builds his toxic tunnel. I have also urged him to come up with a genuine package of public transport, walking and cycling options for the east of London. He has so far failed to do so and is making out that a four lane motorway is the only viable option.
“You cannot build your way out of congestion. Any attempts to do so just spread traffic around in different ways and suck in new traffic attracted by new road space.
“I urge Newham residents to respond to the public consultation, say no to this flawed scheme and demand alternatives to a polluting tunnel that will flood Newham with a tidal wave of traffic with dreadful results.”
TfL argues that the tunnel would ease congestion and forms part of a package that incorporates increased links via public transport, including more bus routes under the river in addition to Crossrail and a possible cycle bridge to Canary Wharf.
TfL’s head of planning Richard de Cani told The Wharf: “What with six new rail crossings, including Crossrail, the overall approach in the past 20 years has been to push people on to public transport – but some of them will still have to drive.”