As the enquiry into the Thames Gateway Bridge draws to a close London's Green MEP, Jean Lambert, has submitted a formal objection against the development that could destroy the lives of East London residents.
Jean, who recently received confirmation from the EU Commission that London's air quality is in breach of EU laws, warned that the bridge will only worsen the situation. As she submitted the objection Jean commented; "London's air quality is already in a worrying state. In Greenwich only one of the eight active air quality monitoring sites met EU standards in 2005 and Bexley is in a similarly poor situation with four of the five monitoring sites failing. We should not even be proposing a project that will knowingly break the rules.
"Traffic in the area is already busy and the introduction of the Thames Gateway Bridge and a Crossrail station nearby will mean that the area south of the river will become a commuter hub. With no planned facilities for traffic approaching the bridge, traffic congestion and air pollution is likely to reach an all time high. The council will then be forced to widen Knee Hill, a narrow road bounded by ancient woodland, leading to another loss of amenity and biodiversity."
The formal objection also raised concerns over the effects on schools in the area. Being close to the bridge, schools in the surrounding area would be plagued with noise and air pollution having severe detrimental effects on the children's health.
There is an extremely strong case against the proposed Thames Gateway Bridge, which has been made by a significant number of organisations, community groups and local residents. The formal objection from Jean Lambert MEP highlights some of the major reasons for rejecting the proposal to build the Thames Gateway Bridge.
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Notes to editors:
Jean Lambert: In October 2005 Jean was named MEP 2005 for Justice and Human Rights. Jean was first elected Green Party Member of the European Parliament for London in the 1999 European elections. She was re-elected in 2004. She is one of nine MEPs representing London and one of two UK Green representatives in the European Parliament.
Widening of Knee Hill: Knee Hill marks the boundary between Greenwich and Bexley and is bounded by ancient woodland. The Thames Gateway Bridge will bring increased traffic to Knee Hill, which will impact upon the woods around Knee Hill.
The woodlands either side of Knee Hill, Lesness Abbey Woods and Bostall Woods,
are Metropolitan Open Space. The Inquiry has heard that "they make up significant
areas of the green chain containing may rare and Priority species
as bats, stag beetled and tawny owls."