What is happening to the Silvertown tunnel? in “What’s on in East London”

What is happening to the Silvertown tunnel in "What's on in East London"

What is happening to the Silvertown tunnel? in "What's on in East London"What is happening to the Silvertown tunnel in "What's on in East London"

Credit Photo: Method Time Production

The timeline of Silvertown tunnel:

  • April 2016: Application to Secretary of State for Transport
  • 2016-2017: Examination and hearing process
  • May 2018:  go ahead given
  • February-October 2018:  Survey work
  • 2019: RiverLinx consortium announced as the bid winner
  • 2020: Construction started
  • Spring 2022: Tunnel Boring Machine  is assembled and tunnelling begins southbound towards Greenwich
  • Winter 2022: Tunnel Boring Machine tunnelling begins northwards
  • 2023: Opening user charges and cross-river bus network proposals developed
  • 2024 Registration opens for user-charging accounts (for both Silvertown and Blackwall tunnels)
  • 2025: Planned opening of the new tunnel.

What the bid winner has done so far

Since construction work started in 2020, The set up worksites in Newham and Greenwich are completed:

  • Geotechnical surveys and in-river ground investigations
  • Demolition works and utility diversions
  • Strengthening of the river wall so the Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) can pass underneath – this has improved flood defences in line with the Thames Estuary 2100 plan
  • A coach park for local events industry use during the works


  • Building a decked car park that will be used temporarily by the O2 during the main construction phase
  • Preparing the launch chamber in the Newham site for the arrival of the Tunnel Boring Machine

Permission for the tunnel

In May 2018. The formal process by which the Government gives the green light to any development categorised as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP).


Ditching the scheme

Sadiq Khan the Mayor of London  said through his representative that there is an urgent need for another river crossing to ease the congestion at the Blackwall tunnel.

Mayor of London is urged to publish the cancellation cost

Sadiq Khan was urged to establish the cancellation cost at the meeting of the London Assembly on Wednesday 26th of January, assembly held to discuss the budget proposals. A motion was voted to ask the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan to estimate and publish the Silvertown Tunnel cancellation cost.