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Brunel Bridge – a pedestrian and cycling bridge between Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf


Following  his “key manifesto commitment”,  in a press release issued on 4 October 2016Sadiq Khan said the bridge would be going ahead, to be delivered as soon as 2020.

Three years after the Mayors unequivocal go-ahead for the bridge, TfL and the Mayor have done a U turn – now saying that the bridge is unaffordable,  based on the absurd  headline worst case scenario of £602M.

  • This bridge was promised to be potentially delivered this year.  Instead,  TfL have achieved nothing tangible in all that time.  Questions should be raised regarding why the huge gap between expectations and reality with a focus on judgement and competence
  • Why after several years of deliberations did the cost suddenly rocket from £330M to £602M in a few months?
  • According to our figures  there is a MASSIVE amount of bloat in the TfL figures amounting to £428M – the figure without the bloat is only £174M.  But look as the comparable but much more massive road and rail vertical lifting bridges in France and the US  built for significantly less than even our £174M figure and the whole basis for the TfL estimates comes into question.  Some are saying the TfL figures have been engineered as a face saving exercise to stop the bridge for political reasons.

Jacques Chaban-Delmas Bridge in Bordaux – all-in cost £145M

TfL must explain why their headline estimate is 4 times the actual cost (£145M) of the French Jacques Chaban-Delmas bridge which is a MASSIVE 575m vertical lift bridge with 4 traffic lanes, 2 monorail tracks and 2 sidewalk/bikeways


Sarah Mildred Long Bridge connecting Maine and New Hampshire £125M

TfL must also explain why this is more than 4 times the actual cost (£125M) of the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge which is a MASSIVE 850m double-decker road and rail vertical lift bridge in the US

Our Proposal

With the French and US road/rail lifting bridges costing £145M and £125M it could be argued that a lightweight pedestrial and cycling bridge should cost significantly less.

We propose that Tfl reappraise their figures in view of our comments to reset the budget and get the bridge project back on track.


This exciting project to join Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf has a well grounded justification and wide support from the community, businesses and politicians.

Enthusiastic political support comes from Caroline Pidgeon, Chair of the Transport Committee at the London Assembly and Southwark Council – see our News section for details