Published 22 Oct 2016
In a surprise piece of good news, Sadiq Khan has announced that a DLR crossing will be built at Gallions Reach , taking the DLR to Thamesmead. At the same time TfL will further investigate the possibility of extending the Goblin heavy rail line from Barking Riverside to Abbey Wood.
By itself, this is great news. Thamesmead badly needs rail access, and rail crossings across the Thames will massively improve accessibility! But the sting in this news is that Tfl are still looking into building disastrous road crossings.
Also, the DLR will only run to Thamesmead - much less ambitious than TfL's earlier suggestion of taking the DLR all the way to Bexleyheath Town Centre. This means it won't link to Crossrail and it won't help the people of Bexleyheath, whose town centre remains without any convenient rail access - a situation that routinely causes traffic jams there.
And the threat remains that TfL may still also choose to build what are basically new urban motorways at Gallions Reach and Belvedere - causing pollution, misery, congestion, and massively slowing down many journeys within Greenwich and Bexley. This means BARC's work is not yet done.
We congratulate Sadiq Khan on his apparent decision to prioritise rail crossings. These will help the people of Greenwich and Bexley and are the only way to provide better mobility and help businesses and local people get where they need to go quickly without endless traffic jams. But we still need to convince Sadiq Khan and TfL of the absurdity of building more roads and causing more congestion.
Read more about The plans for road crossings.