Plans to open up a disused wharf on the south side of the Thames could provide space for a passenger ferry until the Hammersmith bridge is repaired.
The wharf sits in front of the former Harrod’s buildings in Barnes, and is bought by Jamie Waller last year for an estimated £275,000. He has now submitted a planning application to refurbish the wharf for the temporary bridge replacement ferry service. If it opens, then the ferry would shuttle between the old Harrods Furniture Depository wharf on the south side and possibly to the existing landing wharf on the north side in Fulham Reach.
The proposals are being put forward by the wharf owner, and are separate — at the moment — from TfL’s plans to offer a contract to a ferry operator. TfL says that the ferry service will need to carry around 800 people an hour, although it has been suggested one of the three bidders could increase that to 1,200 passengers per hour.
The owner is offering the use of the wharf to the eventual ferry company for free for 12-18 months as part of the package. He then plans to repurpose the wharf into a permanent building, such as a cafe or studio.
Almost 2,700 local residents have already signed a petition to support the Harrods Wharf proposal, and the owner says it would offer a better option than some of the other locations being suggested as it would reuse existing infrastructure next to the river.
The design for the Harrods Wharf has been drafted by Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands (LDS), who are also the creators of the Golden Jubilee Bridges and the Illuminated River light art project.