Blackwall Tunnel to close 9pm each weekday for three years

THE northbound Blackwall Tunnel on the A12 is about to be subjected to a three-year programme of engineering work. It is being closed from next month between 9pm and 5am Sunday to Friday, when traffic is diverted through the southbound tunnel

By Mike Brooke

THE northbound Blackwall Tunnel on the A12 into East London is about to be subjected to a three-year programme of engineering work.

It is being closed from next month between 9pm and 5am Sunday to Friday, when traffic is diverted through the southbound tunnel, with a speed limit reduced to 20mph each night, Transport for London has confirmed.

The �70 million scheme involves new fire and incident detection systems, better access for emergency services, new CCTV cameras, lighting, ventilation and communication system.

Work on the two-lane tunnel first opened 113 years ago, which carried two-way traffic until the newer southbound bore opened in 1967, is to meet latest Government safety regulations.


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TfL’s Street Operations chief Garrett Emmerson said: “The Blackwall Tunnel was built during the Victorian era to transport horse-drawn carriages under the Thames.

“Yet more than a century later, 50,000 vehicles a day drive through it. The programme will prolong the life of this busy commuter route.”

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It was the longest underwater tunnel in the world when it was opened in 1897, Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee year, stretching a whole mile between Blackwall Point in Greenwich and the East India Dock Road in Poplar.

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