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Shortlist unveiled for Silvertown Tunnel

Shortlist unveiled for Silvertown Tunnel

Transport for London (TfL) has revealed the names of the three companies still in the race to construct the new Silvertown Tunnel under the Thames.

Cintra Global, Hochtief PPP Solutions GmbH and Skanska Strabag have been shortlisted for the £1 billion project, which will see a twin-bore tunnel dug to connect Silvertown with the North Greenwich Peninsula. It will run under the Thames in a line adjacent to the route taken high over the river by the Emirates Air Line cable car.

When construction of the tunnel has been completed, the crossing will help ease congestion on the Blackwall Tunnel and provide an easier way for vehicles to get from one side of the river to the other. This will, in turn, help provide the much-needed transport connectivity improvements required as east London prepares to take the bulk of the capital's expected increase in population to ten million people by the 2030s. Among the transport benefits will be new bus routes, with an extra 37 buses a day crossing under the river.

Subject to final planning consent, work will start in 2019, with the tunnel being open four years later. The preferred contractor will be chosen later this year.

Managing director of surface transport at TfL Leon Daniels said: "It's great to see such a strong shortlist of bidders to design, finance, build, and maintain the new Silvertown Tunnel.

"The tunnel will be essential to help tackle congestion and reliability in east and south-east London, as well as transform cross river bus services and support planned growth across the wider area."

Silvertown will add to the growing number of tunnels being constructed across the capital, with recent work on Crossrail set to be followed by Crossrail 2, and HS2, plus extensions of the Underground to Battersea (Northern line) and from Elephant and Castle to Lewisham (Bakerloo line).

Noting the growth in underground construction jobs, TfL recently announced the establishment of the Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy, which it will run in conjunction with Prospects College of Advanced Technology.

Based in Ilford, it will help train more workers for future tunneling projects. 

Image: iStock/KYONZO


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