Plans for a 27-storey tower close to the Silvertown Tunnel’s southern entrance are inching forward, documents submitted to Greenwich Council reveal.

Fairview New Homes announced earlier this year that it had bought a former lorry park at Boord Street, just off the Blackwall Tunnel approach. 

Documents submitted to Greenwich planners suggest that Fairview plans to build 361 homes together with 350 student rooms on the site, which is currently being used as part of the Silvertown Tunnel construction site.

Self-storage space, light industrial and commercial units are also planned as part of the scheme, which would involve five buildings of up to 27 storeys. 

No formal planning application has been submitted yet, but in the spring Fairview asked for a “screening opinion” from the council on whether it would need an environmental assessment or not. In June, the planners said the proposal did need an assessment.

Board Street in 2021
The corner of the Boord Street site in 2021. The land was used for housing after the 1970s, when the Blackwall Tunnel approach cut it off from the rest of the community. The red-brick building is due to become an 18-storey hotel. (Image: The Greenwich Wire)

Now a request for a “scoping opinion” has been submitted, asking for details on what requirements any development would need to satisfy.

The land – last used as a distribution yard for the Evening Standard – is separated from the Silvertown Tunnel entrance by the site of the old East Greenwich gasholder, a much-loved landmark which was dismantled in 2020. This site is in separate ownership and is also due to be developed at some point.

It is also next to the Studio 338 nightclub, famous in the 1980s as a comedy venue called the Tunnel Club.

Terraced housing and the entrance to the East Greenwich gas works filled the site until the 1970s. The houses were swept away after the opening of the Blackwall Tunnel approach a few years earlier, which separated Boord Street’s residents from the rest of the community.

Plans for an 18-storey hotel on the other side of Boord Street were approved in March 2020, with a deadline of early 2024 for work to formally begin.

Boord Street site in 2021
The land, pictured in 2021, was last used as an Evening Standard distribution yard (image: The Greenwich Wire)

Development plans for the Greenwich Peninsula may eventually see much of the land surrounding both the Blackwall and Silvertown Tunnel entrances covered by housing.

Across the Thames, 5,000 homes are planned for Thameside West, behind the Silvertown Tunnel’s northern entrance. 

The new road, which will include dedicated lanes for HGVs and buses, is to open in 2025. Most of the tunnelling work has recently been completed, although critics of the tunnel have mocked mayor Sadiq Khan for not marking the milestone.