Consultation begins on revised £6.8bn Lower Thames Crossing plans in UK

WCN Editorial Team 29 Jan 2020 EUROPE TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE

UK’s Highways England has commenced public consultation for the revised £6.8bn Lower Thames Crossing project.

Said to be Britain’s longest road and world’s third-widest bored tunnel, the Lower Thames Crossing project involves the construction of a 14.3-mile road to connect Kent, Thurrock and Essex. It is expected to almost double road capacity across the River Thames east of London.

The design of the Lower Thames Crossing project has been revamped as a result of the feedback received from 29,000 responses made during the previous consultation round, as well as technical information obtained through surveys and ground investigations.

The eight-week consultation on the revised designs of the project is scheduled to end on 25 March 2020.

Highways England complex infrastructure programme director Chris Taylor 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.”

The Lower Thames Crossing project will deliver improvements to the M25, A2 and A13, as well as new structures and changes to existing bridges, buildings, tunnel entrances, viaducts and utilities along the length of the new road.

Intended to improve journey times along parts of the A127 and M20, the project also involves the construction of two 4km tunnels, and a free-flow charging system.

Some of the updates to the project design include providing direct access between Gravesend and the A2/M2 eastbound, as well as a redesigned Gravesend East junction and link roads to reduce congestion.

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The Lower Thames Crossing junction with the M25. (Credit: Crown copyright/gov.uk)

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