New images released as next phase of Lower Thames Crossing consultation begins

New images showing plans for Britain’s longest road tunnel connecting Kent, Essex and Thurrock have been released as the project begins its next phase of public consultation today.

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The further consultation into Highways England’s proposed Lower Thames Crossing will give people the chance to have their say on latest changes to the multi-billion pound project.

 

The changes have been made after detailed analysis of the 29,000 responses received during the last consultation held in 2018, and new technical information following surveys and ground investigations.

 

Caption: this viaduct will carry the new Lower Thames Crossing route over the Mardyke valley

 

The Lower Thames Crossing will provide a new 14.3-mile 70mph road connecting Kent, Thurrock and Essex, with the world’s third-widest bored tunnel.

 

It will almost double road capacity across the River Thames east of London, connecting communities, reducing delays and providing more reliable journeys.

 

The eight-week consultation began today (00:01 29 January) and will end at 23:59 on 25 March.

 

People can respond in the consultation by visiting one of 20 events in Kent, Essex and Thurrock, by completing an online survey through the Lower Thames Crossing website, sending a form via Freepost, or sending an email.

 

Caption: the north entrance to the Lower Thames Crossing, in Essex

 

Chris Taylor, Director of Highways England’s Complex Infrastructure Programme, said:

 

“The Lower Thames Crossing is Highways England’s most ambitious project in 30 years, designed to improve journeys across the southeast and open up new connections and opportunities for people and businesses.

 

“Getting the views of the local community and businesses is crucial to designing a project that will offer the best value, maximise the benefits for all, while reducing the impact on local communities and the environment. This consultation is a chance for people to review and comment on a number of changes made since our last consultation in 2018, and to help shape this once-in-a-generation project.”

 

Caption: the Lower Thames Crossing junction with the M25 (looking north), with a new bridge for Ockenden Road

 

The updates to the design include:

  • Providing direct access between Gravesend and the A2/M2 eastbound, and a redesigned Gravesend East junction and link roads to reduce congestion;
  • Extending the southern tunnel entrance (in Gravesend) 350 metres south to move the road away from properties in Chalk and reduce impact on protected bird habitats in the Ramsar Marshes and the Thames Estuary;
  • Removing the rest and service area and maintenance depot after further investigation and consideration of the issues raised during statutory consultation, which means the junction at Tilbury is no longer required;
  • Moving the alignment of the route between Tilbury and the A13 junction by approximately 60 metres (north-east) to avoid pylons and overhead cables;
  • Redesigning some slip roads around the A13/A1089 junction to move roads away from properties, improve safety at the junctions, and improve visual impact, and;
  • Removing one lane southbound between the M25 and A13 junction to reduce the amount of land required, while still providing sufficient capacity.

 

Caption: the southern entrance to the Lower Thames Crossing, in Kent

 

Other updated plans on show include:

  • More details on the construction plans for the Lower Thames Crossing;
  • A revised development boundary resulting from of the design changes, proposed utility diversions and additional land required for environmental mitigation, and;
  • A set of proposals for maintaining, improving and upgrading the walking, cycling and horse-riding network around the Lower Thames Crossing.

 

Once the consultation closes in March, Highways England will analyse the new responses ahead of finalising its plans to seek planning consent for the project, through submitting a Development Consent Order (DCO).

 

As part of the DCO application, Highways England will submit a Consultation Report, explaining how the issues raised during both consultations were considered and responded to.

 

Caption: the view of Muckingford Road in Essex, overlooking the northern entrance to the Lower Thames Crossing

 

To keep up to date with the latest travel information follow @HighwaysEAST on Twitter or visit www.highwaysengland.co.uk

  Highways England is the government-owned company responsible for modernising, maintaining and operating England’s motorways and major A roads.
 

Project images and high-quality video news reel can be downloaded here: https://lowerthamescrossing.sharepoint.com/:f:/s/ExternalFS/EsvW_00TNDNEvUGEDbeuTyMBEefbOohxGXKSOcWHifRZsA?e=IZ87PR

 

Full details of the changes to the design being consulted upon will be made available at the start of the consultation on 29 January 2020.

 

Consultation Website – www.lowerthamescrossing.co.uk/consultation-2020

 

How to get involved

  • Fill in the online survey at www.lowerthamescrossing.co.uk/consultation-2020
  • Email comments or electronic copies of the response form to: LTC.CONSULTATION@TRAVERSE.LTD
  • Post comments or paper response forms to: FREEPOST LTC CONSULTATION (no stamp or additional address information is needed on the envelope)
  • Hand in a paper response form at a public information event or the mobile information centre.
  • Responses must be received by 11.59pm on 25 March 2020

 

Consultation event locations south of the River Thames

  • Cascades Leisure Centre, Thong Lane, Gravesend DA12 4LG
    • Thursday 27 February 2020, 2pm-8pm
  • Gravesham Civic Centre, Windmill Street, Gravesend DA12 1AU
    • Saturday 14 March 2020, midday-6pm

Mobile Information Centre locations south of the River Thames

  • Chalk Parish Hall, Pirrip Close, Gravesend DA12 2ND
    • Wednesday, 4 March 2020, 10am-7pm
  • Higham Library Car Park, 8 Forge Lane ME3 7AS
    • Friday, 6 March 2020, 10am-3pm
  • Higham Train Station Car Park ME3 7JQ
    • Friday, 6 March 2020, 4pm-7pm
  • Gravesend Town Centre, King Street DA12 2XX
    • Saturday, 7 March 2020, 10am-5pm
  • Shorne Woods Country Park, Brewers Road, Shorne, Gravesend DA12 3HX
    • Sunday, 8 March 2020, 11am-4pm
  • Meadow Rooms, The Street, Cobham, Gravesend DA12 3BZ
    • Thursday, 12 March 2020, 10am-3pm
  • Sole Street Station Car Park, Cobham, Gravesend DA13 0XY
    • Thursday, 12 March 2020, 4pm-7pm
  • Shorne Village Hall Car Park, 16 The Street, Shorne, Gravesend DA12 3EA
    • Wednesday, 18 March 2020, 10am-7pm

Consultation event locations north of the River Thames

  • Thurrock Civic Centre, Blackshots Lane, Grays RM16 2JU
    • Friday 21 February 2020, 2pm-8pm
  • New Windmill Hall, St Mary’s Lane RM14 2QH
    • Saturday 22 February 2020, midday-6pm
  • East Tilbury Recreation Club, Princess Avenue, East Tilbury RM18 8ST
    • Tuesday 3 March 2020, 2pm-8pm
  • Orsett Hall Hotel, Prince Charles Avenue, Orsett RM16 3HS
    • Monday 9 March, 2pm-8pm
  • Linford Methodist Church, East Tilbury Road, Linford SS17 0QS
    • Wednesday 11 March 2020, 2pm-8pm
  • Brandon Groves Community Club, Brandon Groves Avenue, South Ockendon RM15 6TD
    • Tuesday 17 March 2020, 2pm-8pm

Mobile Information Centre locations north of the River Thames

  • Defoe Parade, Grays RM16 4QR
    • Wednesday, 26 February, 2020 10am-7pm
  • Thames Chase Forest Centre, Broadfields Farm Cottage, Pike Lane, Upminster RM14 3NS
    • Friday 28 February 2020, 12pm-5pm
  • Upminster Library, 26 Corbets Tey Road, Upminster RM14 2BB
    • Thursday, 19 March 2020, 10am-7pm
  • Grays Town Centre, High St, RM17 6NP
    • Saturday, 21 March 2020, 10am-5pm

 

Consultation documents at our deposit locations:

  • Brentwood Library, Brentwood CM14 4BP
  • Dartford Central Library, Market Street, Dartford DA1?1EU
  • Gravesend Library, Gravesend DA12 1BE
  • Grays Library, Grays RM17 5DX
  • Maidstone Library, Maidstone ME14?1LQ
  • Rochester Library, Rochester ME1 1EW
  • Romford Central Library, Romford RM1 3AR
  • Tilbury Hub, Tilbury RM18?8AD

 

About the Lower Thames Crossing

The Lower Thames Crossing is a proposed new road connecting Kent, Thurrock and Essex through the UK’s longest road tunnel, beneath the River Thames. The new connection will provide up to 90% additional road capacity across the River Thames east of London and transform journeys through the South East region and beyond.

 

Real-time traffic information for England’s motorways and major A roads is available via its website ( www.trafficengland.com), local and national radio travel bulletins, electronic road signs and mobile apps. Local Twitter services are also available at https://highwaysengland.co.uk/highways-england-about-us.

For further information please contact Highways England’s press office (24hrs) on 0844 693 1448 and select the most appropriate option below:

Option 1: National enquiries (9am to 5.30pm) & out of hours for urgent enquiries
Option 2: North West (between 9am & 5.30pm)
Option 3: Yorkshire, Humber and North East (between 9am & 5.30pm)
Option 4: West Midland (between 9am & 5.30pm)
Option 5: East Midlands (between 9am & 5.30pm)
Option 6: East (between 9am & 5.30pm)
Option 7: South East (between 9am & 5.30pm)
Option 8: South West (between 9am & 5.30pm)