Ferries could be deployed during Tower Bridge closure

News Desk (02 June, 2016) Transport

Around 40,000 people and 21,000 vehicles cross the bridge every day making it a critical connection in crossing the Thames.

2063Marathon runners crossing Tower Bridge last month.

Ferries could help the public get across the Thames as the City of London officially announced the closure of Tower Bridge from October 1 for three months.

The 122-year-old bridge will close this winter to vehicles  for the entire time but open for pedestrians for all but three weekends so that vital engineering works can take place.

Around 40,000 people and 21,000 vehicles cross the bridge every day making it a critical connection in crossing the Thames.

Its closure will mean ferries could be drafted in to help thousands of members of the public get across safely without having to take lengthy diversions.

Chris Hayward, Chairman of the Planning and Transport Committee, said: “This decision to close Tower Bridge to vehicles has not been taken lightly, and this course of action has been taken after extensive consultation and planning in conjunction with numerous stakeholders.

“We will use this time to repair, refurbish, and upgrade London’s most iconic bridge, which has gone without significant engineering works for more than thirty-five years.

“We will work hard to minimise disruption to both pedestrians and motor vehicles, and the bridge’s viewing walkways and exhibitions will stay open for the entirety of the works.”

Coinciding with the Tooley Street closure to eastbound traffic, the closure will add to a growing list of traffic problems residents will have to face.

Leon Daniels, Managing Director of Surface Transport at TfL, said: “We’ve been working closely with the City of London to minimise the impact of the vital refurbishment of Tower Bridge and to ensure that Londoners have the travel advice they need.

“Our advice to those traveling in the area is to check before they travel and to plan an alternative route or allow more time for their journeys as roads will be busier than usual.”

The works on the bridge will be paid for by the Bridge House Estate, a charitable trust, and carried out primarily by BAM Nuttall, a British based civil engineering contractor.

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