BAM consortium wins London’s £1bn Silvertown Tunnel job

Riverlinx, a consortium made up of BAM’s public private partnerships arm BAM PPP PGGM, Aberdeen Standard Investments, Cintra, Macquarie Capital and SK Engineering & Construction, has been named as preferred bidder to build the £1bn Silvertown Tunnel.

The deal will see the consortium design, build, finance and maintain the new London river crossing under the Thames in east London for Transport for London (TfL).

Work on the tunnel is to begin later this year, and it is set to open in 2025 with around 37 buses an hour operating in both directions.

It will link the Greenwich Peninsula and the Royal Docks together and alleviate the congestion and environmental impacts caused by miles of standing traffic around the Blackwall Tunnel area. It is also the first permanent road crossing to be constructed across the River Thames east of Tower Bridge since the QE2 Bridge at Dartford opened in October 1991.

The project will also deliver a range of improvements in the areas around the tunnel on both sides of the river, including additional noise barriers along the approach roads, new green spaces around the tunnel entrances and walking and cycling upgrades to Boord Street and Tunnel Avenue in the south and Silvertown Way, Tidal Basin Roundabout and its approach roads in the north.

Under the design, build, finance and maintain contract, TfL will only start making payments once the tunnel is open and available for use. TfL will also be able to reduce payments should the tunnel not meet certain key standards, such as availability for use by traffic and physical condition.

Throughout the summer, the consortium will work to confirm financial arrangements with lenders in respect to the project and set up the supply chain. Only once these are all agreed will TfL award them the contract for the project.

Construction and maintenance costs will be covered via a user charge on both the new tunnel and the existing Blackwall Tunnel.

Alex Williams, director of City Planning at TfL said: "The need for more river crossings in East London, to unlock growth and give residents and businesses better access to jobs and services, has been clear for decades.

"The Silvertown Tunnel, which is vital to support London’s economy, has been designed to resolve the existing congestion problem around Blackwall, improve overall air quality and enable new cross-river bus routes to be introduced."

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