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London mayoral candidate Zac Goldsmith backs plans to convert the A3 into underground tunnel

London mayoral candidate Zac Goldsmith has backed plans to convert the A3 at Tolworth into an underground tunnel, while rival Sadiq Khan promised to pursue the proposal only if it offers “good value for money”.

Plans first surfaced to take the A3 – one of London’s busiest commuter routes – underground when Boris Johnson visited Boston last year and suggested the move would free up land for development and tackle pollution.

The plans are based on the Big Dig project in Boston, where a major interstate highway was sunk to make a 3.5-mile underground tunnel. Concept drawings show the proposed tunnel in Tolworth would extend from the roundabout at Tolworth Tower to beyond Princes Avenue, including the site recently sold by Tesco to property developer Meyer Bergman.

TfL said in February 2015 it would draw up more detailed plans with Kingston Council and report back to the mayor’s office in May of that year, including with a funding plan. A spokesman for the Mayor of London could not confirm when the proposals would be finalised.

Comments

But sadly he is anti LHR expansion so will not be getting my usual safe Tory vote.

I expect he'll actually gain a lot more votes than he will lose in this area from the anti Heathrow expansion policy.

Yes,I fear that you are right.

It stands to reason, I think. Heathrow offers very little benefit to Kingston/Surbiton residents because of its poor transport links, but it certainly creates a lot of noise.

Not as much noise as the A3 generates if one lives in Berrylands or indeed the trains,personally I should like to see another runaway at both LHR and LGW,but I admit I fly a lot and envy the european airports for their space and punctuality.

Agreed, but I expect that the residents of Berrylands would also be complaining if the A3 was widened or an additional train track was to be run through their gardens. If those things happened, it would probably be a great benefit to the residents of Kingston and Surbiton as a whole, but a real hassle to them!

Heathrow expansion is a much wider issue as it affects whole swathes of SW London. Apart from the noise, my main issue is that it is such a difficult airport to get to from a lot of the areas it should serve, Kingston/Surbiton included.

If I am flying really early in the morning or later on in the evening, a £20 'Uber' gets me there very quickly, but during the day it can be several times that price as it takes several times as long. Car and bus are out for the same reason. The train journey is convoluted at best and sometimes the best way seems to be Surbiton to Waterloo, Bakerloo to Paddington and Heathrow Express to Heathrow which is as ludicrous as it is expensive.

I have actually got to Gatwick cheaper and quicker on public transport and that is an airport that must be 3 times the distance away and gives us no noise pollution at all.

I'd say the area from Teddington to Esher is uniquely badly affected by the Heathrow expansion proposal, as it gets all the noise but none of the benefits. Any further north and it is quick enough to get there by road, any further south and the M25 comes into play as an alternative route.

I'm surprised how hard people find it to get to Heathrow from Surbiton - there's several direct buses from Kingston! I don't drive and have used those buses several times.

It s easy enough to do, but how long does it take? I have sat in a taxi for an hour sometimes to get to Heathrow and I can't see how a bus would be that much quicker if the traffic is bad.

Gatwick takes less time that that!

It is high time national interest was put ahead of individual concerns,the government should brook no interference or objections and build two runways with additional private finance.
Night flying can then be restricted as more slots become available and as engine noise is becoming quieter the disruption would be less than now.#
I quite agree with transport links and again Crossrail2 and more lanes on the A3 in tunnels would be idea and perhaps monorails from LHR to LGW via
Surbiton or Thames Ditton with much more car parking in basement plus multi storeys on site would be ideal.

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