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A2 in chaos

PUBLISHED: 12:48 03 December 2009 | UPDATED: 17:23 25 August 2010

JAM: The closure of the A2 created traffic hold ups.

JAM: The closure of the A2 created traffic hold ups.

TWO fires on major roads have created traffic chaos, prompting calls for work into an extra river crossing to be speeded up. A pick-up truck caught fire 150 yards short of the exit of the northbound Blackwall tunnel at 5.30pm on Sunday. It forced the clo

TWO fires on major roads have created traffic chaos, prompting calls for work into an extra river crossing to be speeded up.

A pick-up truck caught fire 150 yards short of the exit of the northbound Blackwall tunnel at 5.30pm on Sunday. It forced the closure of the tunnel for several days creating traffic "hell" for motorists on Monday morning.

It followed the closure of the A2 near Eltham crematorium last Thursday when an articulated lorry was gutted by fire, creating backlogs on the surrounding road network.

James Cleverly, London Assembly member for Bromley and Bexley, has said that the Blackwall Tunnel fire has highlighted the need for a new north-south river crossing.

Mr Cleverly said: "There is grid lock in south-east London because of this fire. It's a complete nightmare.

"What this accident highlights is the need for a new river crossing near the Blackwall Tunnel. Of course this is not a solution to today's traffic hell, but motorists and my constituents need to know that a long term plan for relieving pressure on the tunnel is being worked on.

"I shall be making representation to the Mayor on this matter."

A spokesman for the London Mayor's office said: "The Mayor has recognised that that there needs to be another crossing in the east-end.

"The incident at the Blackwall tunnel and the knock-on effect it created on the transport network has brought this need into sharp focus.

"Government and Green lobbies have convinced the Mayor that the Thames Gateway plan was not the right option."

Options put forward by TfL in July this year include a tunnel or crossing from Greenwich peninsula to Silvertown. There are proposals for a North Greenwich to Canary Wharf passenger ferry which would require new piers on the Western side of North Greenwich and the Eastern side of Canary Wharf.

A Gallions Reach Ferry would follow the route of now abandoned Thames Gateway Bridge.

martin.sawden@archant.co.uk

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