A segregated high-quality bus scheme is proposed for the eastern centres of Barking and Romford.
High demand for bus services and regeneration sites planned for the Barking and Dagenham riverside area have led to the proposal for a high-quality "intermediate mode" transit system linking town centres and new developments in East London.
In common with Greenwich Waterfront Transit (GWT) on the other side of the river, East London Transit (ELT) will probably be based on diesel bendy-buses, with all routes designed for future conversion to tram in mind should demand increase. High-quality double-deckers are also being considered for the route.
Buses would run on separated or segregated routes, with high-quality stops and next-arrival information as would be expected from a rail-based mode like a tram or the DLR. Initially most of ELT will use bus lanes in combination with strict parking restrictions and enforcement, and priority at junctions. Later, as new developments are constructed on brownfield sites by the river, segregated alignments will be built to serve these.
When fully complete, ELT should serve the key town centres of Ilford, Barking and Romford along with other key interchanges at Gants Hill, Elm Park, Rainham and Gallions Reach, the poorly served Collier Row housing area, and new developments at Harold Hill, Creekmouth, Dagenham Dock and Havering Riverside.
There are three proposed routes:
Phase One: Ilford to Dagenham Dock via Thamesview Estate
Phase One, due for completion in 2008, will be from Ilford town centre to Barking town centre and on to Creekmouth and Dagenham Dock station. It will run via Ilford Lane, Fanshawe Avenue and Longridge Road to Barking station. It will then travel through the pedestrianised Barking town centre via Station Parade and Ripple Road, requiring relocation of the street market in the town centre. It then carries on down Ripple Road to Movers Lane, and passes over the A13 where provision has already been made for it in the reconstruction of the junction here. It turns into the Thames View Estate at Bastable Avenue and uses Choats Road to reach Chequers Lane, where it will terminate just south of Dagenham Dock station.
Parking restrictions will be required particularly on Ripple Road, Movers Lane and in the Thames View Estate in order for the system to be effective. Retailers on the Ripple Road could face a loss of trade with the new parking restrictions.
Further development at Creekmouth and Dagenham Dock will give rise to a new, segregated alignment through the development to the south of the current Creekmouth route. This route would interchange with the proposed DLR extension to Dagenham Dock at Barking Pier and Barking Riverside.
TfL have £20m of funding in place ready to construct this first phase of ELT, and are consulting on the scheme.
The list of stops for Phase 1a is as follows:
Phase 1b: Barking Reach Alignment
As mentioned previously, once newer developments on the Barking Reach are complete, an additional alignment may be built further south, serving the following stops between Barking and Dagenham (*asterisked stops are common to 1a and 1b):
Phase 2: Gallions Reach
A route through new developments between Barking and the DLR at Gallions Reach is proposed for Phase 2. A DLR extension is already proposed between Gallions Reach and Dagenham Dock via the new developments at Creekmouth to improve access to employment in the Docklands and for Royal Docks area residents to access new employment planned for Dagenham Dock.
Linking to Gallions Reach will enable through operation between ELT and Greenwich Waterfront Transit via the new Thames Gateway Bridge, resulting in integration of the two networks into a single Thames Gateway Transit network. The link to Gallions Reach is expected to be from Barking, using a route through regeneration areas to the east of the North Circular - although consultation is currently being carried out on a variety of route options.
* shared with Phase 1a & 1b
Phase 3: Rainham extension
This extension serves new housing developments planned for the long-term in the brownfield area known as Havering Riverside.
Future extensions and routes could see the Ilford line running northwards to Gants Hill, a route linking Rainham to Romford via Elm Park, and a route out from Barking via the University of East London to Romford. Harold Hill and Collier Row could be reached via Romford.
TfL have opened public consultation on the first route of the bus-based East London Transit scheme. The route would operate between Ilford and Dagenham Dock via Barking and the Thames View Estate.
TfL are inviting comments on five possible route options for the East London Transit project between Barking and Gallions Reach. The options include a routes along the existing Royal Docks Road from the A13 junction down to Gallions Reach and through new and recent developments to the east such as the Gallions Reach shopping centre.
Links & Sources