"We're going to need a bigger boat"
After some 20 years of scrimshanking, filibusting and fund hunting, the first piling for London's Crossrail scheme is imminent. Gordon Brown (and his make-up bag) will be on hand later today to formally announce the beginning of enabling works for Canary Wharf station, located just South of Poplar DLR. In truth, basic preparatory work has been on the go for a while, but today marks the start of a huge cofferdam that will set the station aside from those murky dockland waters.
The £500 million complex will include a shopping mall and roof garden, and is designed by Foster and Partners, who were also behind the nearby Jubilee Line station. The shark-like structure will be one of the first stations to be completed in the £16 billion Crossrail scheme. Construction of the main Canary Wharf box will be done and dusted around the time of the Olympics, but we'll have to wait until 2017 for the first trains. Those who use the area should be aware that the Bank Street Bridge, linking Canary Wharf to Poplar, will close for at least a year from Monday.