The UK government has unveiled the preferred route for the new Lower Thames Crossing linking Essex and Kent.
The proposed route will run from the M25 near North Ockendon, cross the A13 at Orsett and then cross under the Thames east of Tilbury and Gravesend. Traffic will be taken to the A2 near Shorne, close to where the route becomes the M2, through a new link road.
The new crossing is anticipated to carry 4.5M heavy goods vehicles in its first year. The government expects the crossing to lead to the creation of over 6,000 jobs and boost the economy by over £8bn.
Transport secretary Chris Grayling said: “We are making the big decisions for Britain. The new Lower Thames Crossing, and other improvements in and around Dartford and Thurrock announced today, will further strengthen our economy while also creating thousands of jobs.”
“Our £23bn investment into our roads is already making a difference, with schemes being completed across the country, including the M1 Catthorpe junction and A556 at Knutsford, cutting journey times for millions of motorists. The schemes announced today not only show we are taking decisions, we are planning upgrades and we are completing roads – making the lives of millions of motorists better.”
The government has also revealed plans to invest another £66M to widen the A13 Stanford-le-Hope bypass from two to three lanes. The investment, which forms part of a £78.8M Thurrock Council project, is expected to improve links to Tilbury and new London Gateway ports. The project is expected to result in the creation of over 4,000 jobs.
* Data provided by Timetric's Construction Intelligence Center.