A new pedestrian and cyclist bridge across the Thames is set to go ahead after a short-list of locations was narrowed down to the final winner.
A preferred location has been identified for a new Thames bridge linking Nine Elms and Pimlico by the bridge design team, appointed by Wandsworth Council.
Whilst all three shortlisted locations were deemed to be viable, the recommended location has been seen as the best opportunity to create links between the Vauxhall Nine Elms Battersea (VNEB) Opportunity Area with local neighbourhoods on the north side of the river.
The location is a bit of a surprise, as the favoured placement had been opposite the new US Embassy building, as analysis by TfL in 2013 found that location to be likely to be the best in terms of people using the bridge.
That particular location was however also opposed by a lot of people living on the north side of the river.
The current design, which hasn’t been finalised, is for a couple of corkscrew spirals at either end leading up to the bridge across the river.
Funding for the bridge is also still to be raised, and although £26 million has been secured from the developers putting up all those towers in Nine Elms, the estimated cost for the bridge to be built is somewhere in the region of £40 million, leaving a sizeable shortfall to be filled.
Last March, the Mayor of London confirmed that “TfL is not in a position to provide funding for the construction and ongoing maintenance of this scheme”.
Robin Snell of Robin Snell and Partners and project team lead, said: “If approved by the Scrutiny Committee we look forward to progressing to the next stage of the Design process, continuing to talk to Londoners about our plans and helping to deliver what will be a landmark new Bridge for London.”
Wandsworth Council’s Finance and Corporate Resources Overview and Scrutiny Committee is being asked to approve the recommendation of the project team before any further stages can be considered.
Update – the Nine Elms Bridge website were quoting £240 million in their Phase 1 report, but that reference has since been removed, and Wandsworth council are stating the cost at £40 million. I’ve updated the article accordingly.