Thames Water has made its initial move to buy land near the River Thames as it paves the way to build the Thames Tideway Tunnel – known as the ‘super sewer’.
Thames Water have written to Hammersmith & Fulham Council highlighting the land that the water company wants to buy for their £4.1bn 20 mile tunnel which aims to alleviate pressure on London’s sewers.
The land includes council owned sites on Carnwath Road in Fulham, around Frank Banfield Park in Hammersmith and around the Emlyn Gardens Estate near Wendell Park.
In the letter to the council, Thames Water say they are seeking to acquire the land by agreement, but make it clear they will seek compulsory purchase powers if an agreement cannot be reached.
The council has been a fierce critic of the super sewer and has been highlighting what it says are cheaper, greener and less disruptive alternatives such as water butts, green roofs and permeable pavements – which conserve and recycle rainwater instead of letting it flood into the sewers triggering pollution in the Thames, the problem the Thames Tideway is designed to alleviate.
Cllr Greg Smith, H&F Council Deputy Leader, says: “If threatening to blight our lives and our wallets wasn’t bad enough, Thames Water now appear intent on blighting our homes and property. The maps they have sent us – highlighting homes, offices, parks and roads – show the truly devastating impact the sewer could have if construction work is not prevented. We remain 100% opposed to the super sewer not only because it will turn residents’ lives upside down and bring massive disruption to communities across London but because we know there are cheaper, greener and less disruptive alternatives.”