|Wandsworth Council Says NO To Barn Elms Tunnel|
Severe disruption, loss of green space, impact on the towpath are all unacceptable
Wandsworth Council has opposed plan by Thames Water to base a seven-year tunnelling operation on Barn Elms playing fields.
"Serious questions remain unanswered and we are not convinced that all alternative locations to Barn Elms have been considered.
"While we support investment in the capital's sewage system we are concerned that the enormous costs and disruption involved in this scheme will outweigh the potential benefits. All of Thames Water's assumptions about the time, land take and construction methodology must face searching examination.
"We will use every opportunity to contest this proposal and protect the interests of our residents."
Excavated spoil from the tunnelling operation would be transported out of the site on the Thames. This is expected to severely disrupt nearby rowing clubs and other recreational river users.
Barn Elms playing fields are based just over the borough boundary in Richmond but are owned and managed by Wandsworth Council.
Wandsworth's concerns are set out in a formal response to the first round consultation on the Thames Tunnel scheme. A second round of consultations will take place in 2011 and Thames Water is expected to submit a full planning application in mid 2012, with the seven year construction programme commencing in 2013.