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Labour Mayor Set to Axe Vauxhall Bus Garage

January 10, 2017 4:39 PM

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Transport for London is pressing ahead regardless with its previously announced plans to axe the popular and iconic bus garage at Vauxhall Cross which opened in December 2004.

The nine stand bus garage is the second busiest in London and cost £4.5 million to build -yet may cost at least £50 million to demolish and redevelop. Designed by world renowned Arup Associates with signature ski-slope canopies incorporating photo-voltaic cells to power the site, the proposal to sweep all of this away has been condemned by local residents, transport users, Liberal Democrats and the 20th Century Society.

A campaign by Our Vauxhall led to a pause around election time and a further consultation but from the start the process has been heavily criticised for not offering an option to keep the bus station. If you ask things in a certain way, critics say, you are bound to get the answer you want.

The Mayor and his Transport for London arm have suggested that the bus station cannot be kept while scrapping the current gyratory system and introducing safer cycle routes but local activists have disputed this and put forward their own scheme which they claim satisfies everyone.

Everyone, that is, but Sadiq Khan's TfL - which critics claim has had a barely hidden agenda all along. In concert with Labour's Lambeth Council, the Mayor wants to redevelop the site with yet another huge multi-story tower block to create a faux High Street where none existed before.

So shops and offices - perhaps for TfL staff? - versus the loss of a key (and rare) integrated London transport interchange and commuters left out in the rain at bus stops all over the adjacent road network and needing to navigate busy roads simply to access tube and rail stations.

With massive development going on apace in the Vauxhall Nine Elms Opportunity Area you might suppose that there would be more need for a dedicated transport interchange here than ever before.

But Labour's property greed apparently knows no bounds.