The Port of London Authority (PLA) and other stakeholders have launched Thames Vision, its 20-year plan for developing use of the River Thames, which is the UK’s busiest waterway for passengers and freight.
The plan lays out six goals for the waterway, which include increasing the Port of London, transporting more cargo and doubling the number of passenger trips along the river, and increasing participation in sport and recreation on the Thames.
The PLA and its partners aim to increase the volume of cargo carried on the Thames each year to over 4m tonnes, which would remove around 400,000 lorry trips from roads in Greater London.
The “vision” has been developed with organisations such as the Port of Tilbury, DP World London Gateway, the Greater London Authority, MBNA Thames Clippers, City Cruises, Livett’s Group, the RPSB, British Rowing and others.
“This blueprint for the future of the Thames can make an important contribution to the Mayor’s aim of encouraging greater use of the river for the transport of passengers and freight. There has been a significant increase in river passengers but we will be looking at what else can be done to increase those numbers,” said London’s new deputy mayor for transport, Val Shawcross, speaking at the Thames Vision launch.
Shawcross said that increased use of the river would also mean more skilled jobs for young people.
Additional PLA pilots are currently being recruited to meet growing demand.
The PLA’s chairman, Christopher Rodrigues, said: “Work on the actions is already well underway and I’m excited to see the progress we can make between now and next spring, when we have our first report back of progress.”