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Two mayors bridge the gap

TWO EAST LONDON mayors – John Biggs from Tower Hamlets and Rokhsana Fiaz from Newham – have met up to mark the opening of a new pedestrian bridge which links their two boroughs.

The bridge cost £593,000 – that’s thought to be the cost of 65,888 meals provided by Tower Hamlets Meals on Wheels service (or enough Meals on Wheels to last just over a year). A contribution of £30,000 was made by Aberfeldy LLP – a joint venture company set up by Poplar HARCA and EcoWorld London to develop the north of East India Dock Road (under the amusing title “Aberfeldy village”). The Council has not revealed where the rest of the money came from – or who is going to pay to maintain it.

Tower Hamlets Council hopes that the new bridge will “increase access for pedestrians and cyclists travelling along the River Lea. It also says that the bridge links Canning Town Station (in Newham) and Silvocea Way (in Tower Hamlets) – which is a very long distance, spanning Bow Creek three times. Executive Mayor John Biggs says that the bridge will link residents of the Aberfeldy estate with Canning Town – but the Aberfeldy seems to be nowhere near Silvocea Way.

Tower Hamlets Council confuses matters further, saying that “the path contributes to the ambition, shared by both boroughs, to link the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to the River Thames with one route.”

Executive Mayor John Biggs said, “I’m delighted that this important Lea River Park connection is now complete. It has been many years in the making and I know it was no easy feat. It will provide a great link to Canning Town for the residents of Tower Hamlets and specifically from the Aberfeldy Estate, away from the busy A13. I’m looking forward to working on more projects with Mayor Fiaz, including the new parks, footpaths, cycle and pedestrian bridges proposed along the River Lea.”

Mayor Fiaz said, “This path will provide residents with the opportunity to choose alternative methods of travelling around London, for example walking or cycling, which will help to contribute to reducing pollution and help Newham reach its target of being carbon neutral by 2030 and carbon zero by 2050. This new walkway will make walking and cycling to work a viable option for many more people in the two boroughs. It also opens up the River Lea River Park and will allow Newham to make the most of its waterways.”

Let us know if you can find the bridge and if it helps you out. We’re planning a field trip to try to find out where this bridge actually is. We’ll let you know.

•Read more about it:
Fish Island bridges: Biggs anti, Sadiq unmoved
Smoke alarm wakes Canning Town resident

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