The Fright Transport Association (FTA) and Road Haulage Association (RHA) have both welcomed news that the Silvertown Tunnel has been given the go-ahead.
The tunnel will link the Greenwich peninsula with Silvertown on the north bank of the Thames, following a similar path to the Emirates Airline. It will be paid for via a user charge and is expected to open in 2022 or 2023.
The RHA supported the proposed tunnel in a consultation last year, and said it will support freight and delivery businesses by providing a more reliable route.
Meanwhile, FTA’s Head of National and Regional Policy, Christopher Snelling, commented: “London’s biggest growth is going to come in the east, and the shortage of road crossings beyond Tower Bridge is already holding back the economy in that part of the city.
“The congestion we currently have at crossings like Blackwall causes massive unnecessary local pollution and disruption for residents – we would all be better off with smoother flowing traffic. This new crossing will not be enough to solve everything, but it will be a big step forward.
“We still want to see more detail on the charging regime. It is crucial for the best use of the crossing that we do not discriminate against essential users like freight – as well as buses, coaches, disabled drivers and tradespeople. Charges should not be set in favour of car users who have other options as to how to get about.”