|From:||East India Dock (TQ387812)|
|To:||East Ham (TQ438827)|
|Distance:||4.9 miles (7.9 km)|
|Meets:||A13, A1261, A1011, A112, A117, A13, A406|
|Route outline (key)|
The A1020 follows a roundabout route through London's Docklands.
The road starts in the area of the old East India Docks, now filled in, by turning off the A13 at traffic lights. A short stretch of dual-carriageway takes the road over the top of the A1261 East India Dock Tunnel, after which slip roads from that road are met at the next roundabout. We continue ahead, still dual, and pass under the DLR immediately before running across the small neck of land separating the River Lea (on the left) from the East India Dock Basin (on the right). The river is crossed after a GSJ serving Trinity Buoy Wharf.
After going under another branch of the DLR a roundabout is reached. The A1020 turns right and merges in to the mainline of the A1011 (traffic in the other direction has to TOTSO). That road ends here (although at one time it continued along the river to North Woolwich) and the A1020 continues along the S2 Silvertown Way parallel to the DLR and passing what remains of Silvertown. At the next roundabout the road turns left, becoming dual once again, and picks up the A112 from North Woolwich at the following roundabout. The A1020 is the dominant partner in a multiplex over the Connaught Bridge, a swing bridge which separates the Royal Victoria Dock (on the left) from the Royal Albert Dock (on the right).
The multiplex ends at the next roundabout where the A1020 turns right, again merging in to the carriageways of another road, unclassified this time. It heads east along Royal Albert Way, to the north of the dock of that name. After the next roundabout the DLR runs down the central reservation. There are two further roundabouts, with DLR stations in the middle, that were built to provide access to future development. However, now the area has been developed the roundabouts have not been used as thought and so they just act as chicanes. This section of the road opened some time around 1990.
At the next roundabout, a proper one this time, we cross the A117 and start to form part of the North Circular Road. Initially dual, we soon appear to go under a bridge to nowhere - that's because it is: this is all that has been built of a GSJ providing access to a new bridge over the River Thames. Heading south we're able to turn off and cross the bridge (it joins the A117) and find out just how overengineered it is!
The road narrows after a set of traffic lights serving a retail park. We then continue north back to a roundabout on the A13. Ahead is the A406, the number normally associated with the North Circular. Some atlases showed the numbering of this part of the A1020 as the A406 when the route was under construction, however, I don't remember whether or not it opened as this or as the A1020. It is likely that the A406 remained reserved for the East London river Crossing as a continuation of the South Woodford to Barking improvement.
A proposed D2 Tunnel, Silvertown Tunnel is designed to ease traffic flows on the A102 Blackwall Tunnel. The A1020 has been allocated as the number for the Silvertown Tunnel, though more recent documents do suggest it might be part of the A102.