Congestion likely to get worse in Greenwich

Transport for London (TfL) have recently changed the operations times and procedures of the Blackwall Tunnel ending over 25 years of the Tidal Flow, which helped to reduce northbound congestion during the morning rush hour. This seemed to have been done hastily and was announced without the normal consultation with Greenwich Council by TfL. After only a week of the change the impact can already be felt by many as the roads in and around Greenwich and Blackheath, the approaches to the Blackwall Tunnel and as far south as Kidbrooke and Eltham are feeling the strain of increased traffic. This change by TfL, who are controlled by the Labour Mayor Livingstone, is said to be due to safety concerns raised by the Police. However it is still normal practice to consult with the local authority before undertaking such a large scale change, this would appear to be Mayor Livingstone imposing his powers on Greenwich without seeing what the local issues are.

Following up questions from Blackheath Westcombe Ward's Conservative Councillors, Geoff Brighty and Alex Wilson, at the Council meeting on 25th April, Conservatives have stepped up efforts to get clear answers about who took the decision and why and whether Greenwich Council was consulted.  As further information becomes available Greenwich Council's Conservative Opposition Leader, Councillor Spencer Drury, has pointed to apparent inconsistencies in the responses so far from Labour politicians.

And now Bob Neill, Assembly Member for Bexley and Bromley and a South East MP has requested that all related documents be made available under the Freedom of Information Act.  He said  "The decision seems to have been taken very hastily.  For thirty years the 'tidal flow' has worked successfully.  Suddenly we have now been told the system should be suspended."  

At the same time Greenwich Conservatives are still waiting to see the findings of a report by Mayor Livingstone's TfL into a possible Congestion Charge in Greenwich, this report will look at current traffic levels and determine if and where a Congestion Charge might be introduced.