Is Crossrail selling North Woolwich short?

The Royal Docks Learning & Activity Centre located on Factory Road, North Woolwich.Council funding was cut last year and they’ve had to rely on private donations and grants. The youth club has since folded and their range of services and workshops are no longer free to the public.

Despite this they’ve battled on, only to be confronted with another hurdle:

The construction of Crossrail has had a serious affect. It’s less attractive to potential donors and people wishing to hire the hall. The drilling fills the air with dust and causes vibrations to the foundations of the building. Hidden behind the railings passing trade is non-existent.

I asked an employee at the centre whether their problems will be solved when Crossrail opens in 2018. The response: “Crossrail is just trains passing by, none will stop around here.”

Diagram created using Microsoft’s Bing maps

Silverlink’s North London Line finished in 2006 and that disused track is set to take trains from Custom House all the way to Woolwich (on the other side of the Thames) without stopping. Crossrail’s planning assessment states:

“Silvertown station will be demolished and passive provision for a new station in the future. The Hybrid Bill proposals do not make provision for a station at Silvertown.”

When the North London Line was removed the DLR between Canning Town and King George V stations was thought be a sufficient alternative. Is this enough? Crossrail stopping in Silvertown would relieve some of the anguish of years of construction for North Woolwich – there should a light at the end of the tunnel.


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