Billed as a “beautiful new garden floating above the River Thames”, the 367-metre-long Garden Bridge is proposed across the Thames between the South Bank and Temple. It is expected to cost £175 million, with £115 million from private donations and £60 million of public money already committed. Critics have suggested that taxpayers will end up paying for the remaining £30 million.
Construction firms Bouygues Travaux Publics and Cimolai has been jointly selected to build the plant-covered London bridge across the River Thames – designed by Thomas Heatherwick. The project is with a strict timescale, which requires the structure to complete in late 2018 to avoid clashing with the construction of a major new sewer. Building work is now scheduled to start this summer.
Heatherwick first unveiled his design for the bridge in 2013. He claimed the project would allow Londoners to rediscover the “amazing piece of nature” that is the River Thames. “There is now an opportunity to connect London together better, to give Londoners a huge improvement in the quality of pedestrian river crossing in this area, to allow us all to get closer to the river and at the same time to stimulate new regeneration possibilities at both ends where it lands,” he said.
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