What are they doing to the River Lea at Bow?

Crossrail work on River Lea grab at Pudding Mill Lane 180813 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Crossrail sign work on River Lea grab at Pudding Mill Lane 180813 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Clear as mud: Crossrail’s sign, above and top, is difficult to read in situ

RELAX, this is a river grab but it’s not as bad as it looks because it’s temporary. The gravel extension to the eastern riverbank on this section of the Lea is due to be removed in the middle of next year 2014.

The great chunk is being taken out of the Lea by Crossrail as part of the  £12 billion scheme to add to rail links across London.

Crossrail told Loving Dalston: “The seventh tunnel boring machine (TBM) has started tunnelling between Pudding Mill Lane and Stepney Green.

“The TBM will be passing under this site shortly. As the tunnel excavation at this location is close to the river bed, gravel is being placed above the line of the excavation to limit any ground settlement. This is a temporary measure.

“A second TBM is due to launch early next year.” The tunnel would enable Crossrail services to join the existing rail network at Stratford.

Ecological concerns were raised with Loving Dalston about whether the gravel was screened to prevent grit particles flowing into the Lea and damaging the gills of fish. Thousands of fish in the Lea died last month July 2013. Crossrail replied that the Environment Agency approved the work to ensure that no damage was done to fish or the river.

Crossrail workers on the river grab at Pudding Mill Lane 180813 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Crossrail surveyors at work on the river grab

No information about the project is easily available on site. The Canal and River Trust said it had asked Crossrail to put signage in place and would ask for more up if necessary.

David Altheer 220813

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.

* Background: Wrong weather for Lea fish  

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