Today the Mayor of London announced a formal inquiry into the controversial Garden Bridge, which requires £60m of taxpayer’s money to meet its £185m total budget.
The project has already had significant problems with questions over the transparency of the procurement process, planning hurdles and the inability to raise the private donations needed.
Supporters argue the bridge will become a landmark, and provide a much-needed pedestrian link in central London. However, as there are several other nearby bridges it seems a stretch to try to argue that the Garden Bridge is vital infrastructure.
Most importantly, however, as a privately-owned project the use of such a large amount of taxpayers’ money can hardly be justified.
It’s good news that Margaret Hodge, who chaired the Public Accounts Committee until 2015, will head the inquiry, it’s about time the Garden Bridge was put under the microscope.
Hopefully she will join the chorus of people who have called for the project to be scrapped to avoid further waste of taxpayer’s money.