Barking and Dagenham Councilís plans for tunnelling a part of the A13, which would pave the way for housing and regeneration, were backed by the chancellor during the 16 March budget.
George Osborne asked Transport for London to draw up plans to finance the £1 billion scheme, which would see a 1.3km stretch of the road – between the Lodge Avenue flyover and the Goresbrook interchange – turned into a so called ‘flyunder’.
The aim is to improve traffic flow in one of the busiest roads into London, which connects Essex with the centre of the capital.
Diverting part of the A13 into a tunnel would also help reconnect the communities who live either side of it, build a new overground station and create a new neighbourhood above and around the road, called Castle Green, which the council said would consist of at least 5,000 new homes and a mix of commercial and community uses.
As a result of the development, 1,200 jobs could be created. While welcoming the chancellor’s announcement, council leader Darren Rodwell stressed that there was still much work to do.
He said that the chancellor had “clearly recognised the huge benefits the tunnel could bring,” but it will take Transport for London “some time” to find out how the project can be funded and it will need “the support of whoever takes over as Mayor of London”.
“However, this announcement now allows us to develop the proposal further and to begin to engage with local businesses and the community,” he concluded.
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