Press Release

Contracts signed as the Silvertown Tunnel passes another major milestone

London, 25 November 2019

  • Riverlinx consortium signs contract with Transport for London on the Silvertown Tunnel, the first major road investment in this part of London in 30 years.
  • The signing of contracts will allow RiverLinx to appoint sub-contractors and suppliers to support delivery of the project, and begin the process of obtaining local stakeholder, government and environmental consents for this project.
  • The project is the UK’s first road tunnel to have dedicated bus lanes, and from day one passengers will be able to cross the river on one of around 37 buses an hour during peak periods. This is a significant upgrade to public transport in the area.
  • When it opens in 2025, the tunnel will support future population growth in this part of London – and minimise the growing delays through the 122-year-old Blackwall Tunnel.

The RiverLinx consortium – comprising Macquarie Capital, Cintra, Aberdeen Standard Investments, BAM PPP PGGM, and SK E&C – have announced that they have reached financial close with Transport for London on the Silvertown tunnel project.

The signing of the contract to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the tunnel will now allow the consortium’s construction team of BAM Nuttall including sister company Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau, Ferrovial Agroman and SK E&C to progress with appointing the local sub-contractors and suppliers who will support the project. This will help deliver a vital piece of infrastructure to prepare for London’s future population growth and relieve chronic congestion and poor air quality around the Blackwall tunnel.

Silvertown will be the UK’s first major road tunnel to include a dedicated bus line in both directions. This will improve cross-river public transport connections, with around 37 buses an hour during peak periods in each direction using the tunnel, including the current six single-decker buses per hour which run through the Blackwall tunnel.

This will result in the proportion of cross-river trips via public transport in this area rising from 10 per cent to 30 per cent. These buses are all expected be zero emission vehicles and will support the growing demand for bus transport across Greenwich, Newham and Tower Hamlets.

Over the past 30 years, East London, both north and south of the river, has seen significant population growth without major investment in the area’s road infrastructure. The local population is expected to increase further, increasing pressure on the 122-year-old Blackwall tunnel.

The new tunnel will provide more resilient transport links north and south of the river, it will reduce the amount of stop-start traffic as well as cut emissions from idling traffic. TfL estimate that the relief of the congestion at Blackwall and beyond should lead to journey time savings.


Media enquiries

José Luis Cobas  - Ferrovial / Cintra
+34 915 866 314 or +34 629 471 839


About the Project

  • TfL’s modelling has anticipated that without Silvertown Tunnel, both traffic and emissions from traffic queuing to pass through the Blackwall Tunnel will worsen over the coming years. Currently, delays in the morning peak across east and southeast London are expected to increase, on average, by over 20 per cent in 2021.
  • The design of the tunnel includes a 1.4-kilometre twin-bore road tunnel under the River Thames as well as 0.6-kilometres of access ramps. It will connect south of the River Thames with the access to the existing Blackwall Tunnel and north of the River Thames with the Tidal Basin Roundabout, in Silvertown, easing traffic congestion in this key London location.
  • The RiverLinx consortium - comprising Macquarie Capital, Cintra, Aberdeen Standard Investments, BAM PPP PGGM and SK E&C - was been named by TfL as Preferred Bidder to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the Silvertown tunnel in May this year:
  • Design and construction of the project will be delivered by a consortium of BAM Nuttall (including sister company Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau providing specialist tunnel engineering expertise), Ferrovial Agroman and SK E&C.
  • In a highly competitive process, 15 international lenders have agreed to provide financing for the £1 billion project, providing value for money for TfL. These include Aviva, Credit Agricole, DZ Bank, Instituto de Credito Oficial, Korea Development Bank, KEB Hana, Export-Import Bank of Korea, Korea Trade Insurance Corporation, KfW IPEX-Bank, Nrinchunkin, Royal Bank of Canada, Samsung Life, Shinsei Bank, SMBC and Woori Bank.


About the members of the RiverLinx consortium

Ferrovial is one of the world's leading infrastructure operators committed to developing sustainable solutions. The company has 96,000 employees and operates in over 20 countries. Its main business areas are: Services, Toll Roads, Construction and Airports. It is a member of Spain's blue-chip IBEX 35 index and is also included in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index and FTSE4Good; all its operations are conducted in compliance with the principles of the UN Global Compact, which the company adopted in 2002. Cintra, its Toll Roads arm, is one of the world’s leading private sector developers of transportation infrastructure in terms of the number of projects and the volume of investment. It currently manages over 1,468 kilometers of toll roads in 24 concessions in Canada, the US, Europe, Australia and Colombia. Cintra is shareholder in the 407 ETR concessionaire, in Ontario, Canada. Ferrovial Agroman is the construction arm of Ferrovial. It delivers value-driven complex multi-disciplinary design and construction solutions across varied sectors worldwide, including transport, energy and water. The company has operated in the UK and Ireland since 2003. Flagship projects in the UK include Crossrail, Heathrow Terminal 2A, London Underground’s new Northern Line Extension and the Central Section of the Thames Tideway Tunnel.

Aberdeen Standard Investments (ASI) is a leading global asset manager dedicated to creating long-term value for our clients, and is a brand of the investment businesses of Standard Life Aberdeen plc, one of the world’s largest investment companies. 

With over 1,000 investment professionals ASI manages £519.4 billion (as at 31 March 2019) of assets worldwide and have clients in 80 countries supported by 50 relationship offices. ASI is high-conviction; long-term investor who believe teamwork and collaboration are the key to delivering repeatable, superior investment performance.

ASI has assets under management of £4 billion within the infrastructure space, invested in over 120 projects across Europe, North America and Australia across transport, healthcare, education, accommodation, and water.

Standard Life Aberdeen plc is headquartered in Scotland. It has around 1.2 million shareholders and is listed on the London Stock Exchange. The Standard Life Aberdeen group was formed by the merger of Standard Life plc and Aberdeen Asset Management PLC on 14 August 2017.

BAM PPP, BAM Nuttall and Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau are operating companies of Royal BAM Group, a worldwide construction services company listed at Euronext Amsterdam.

BAM PPP is responsible for Royal BAM Group’s involvement in public private partnership (PPP) projects. BAM PPP operates in five key European markets, the Netherlands, Belgium, UK, Ireland, Germany and in selected International markets, in addition to exploring broader project finance investment opportunities. BAM PPP’s sector expertise includes roads, rail, education, health, justice, marine and general accommodation. BAM PPP has reached financial close on 48 projects, with a total capital value of over €12.1billion.

As one of the largest civil engineering construction companies in the United Kingdom, BAM Nuttall operates in all sectors of the British civil engineering market on a national and a regional basis. Working with a diverse range of public and private sector customers, BAM Nuttall has a worldwide reputation for delivering exceptional civil engineering achievements spanning rail, marine, tunnelling, highways, and energy and water schemes. Clients include Network Rail, Highways Agency; Environment Agency; National Environment Research Council at British Antarctic Survey; Thames Tideway Tunnel and Olympic Delivery Authority. BAM Nuttall’s head offices is based in Camberley.

Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau has a leading position in the German civil engineering market. The company is based in Frankfurt am Main. Wayss & Freytag Ingenieurbau has a solid reputation for bored tunnels and complex civil engineering projects and is therefore a highly sought-after partner for joint ventures, both in Germany and other countries, where it often works with local Group companies.

PGGM is a cooperative Dutch pension fund service provider. Institutional clients are offered: asset management, pension fund management, policy advice and management support. On June 30, 2019 PGGM had EUR 238 billion in assets under management and was administrating pensions of 4.4 million participants. Around 750,000 workers in the Dutch healthcare are connected to PGGM&CO, our members organization. Either alone or together with strategic partners, PGGM develops future solutions by linking together pension, care, housing and work.

Since founded in 1977, SK E&C has acquired world-class competitiveness in civil engineering as well as the construction of commercial buildings, residential complexes, oil refineries, gas processing plants, petrochemical plants, power plants, and advanced IT infrastructure. SK E&C is applying the extensive technical expertise and proven construction project track record amassed at sites around the world to build major expressways and arterial roads in the nationwide transportation grid. SK E&C toady is creating new space as Korea’s leading builder of tunnels, underground storage facilities and other underground structures. The competencies and experiences that SK E&C has gained from these EPC projects have enabled to expand the involvement in public private partnership (PPP) development projects and SK E&C is now growing as PPP project developer in the global market. Projects of note in this regard include the Eurasia Tunnel and the Canakkale Bridge in Turkey.

Media contacts

Australia and New Zealand
T: +61 2 8232 2336
Email regional contact

T: +1 212 231 1310
Email regional contact

T: +852 3922 4772
Email regional contact

Europe, Middle East and Africa
T: +44 20 3037 4014
Email regional contact