Lower Thames Crossing Cleared For Development Planning
Surrounded by the usual tail backs around the Dartford Crossing approach, Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling announced the preferred route for the Lower Thames Crossing will be Option C, a tunnel East of Gravesend.
It will be a new 13 mile route with a £4.4 billion bored tunnel at its heart. A road north of the River Thames will link the tunnel to the M25 between junctions 29 and 30, and another new road south of the river will link the tunnel to the A2 east of Gravesend.
Highways England consulted on its preferred route east of Gravesend last year and had more than 47,000 responses.
The decision on the preferred route marks a significant step forward in the scheme’s development. Highways England will start the process of detailed design and assessment. This will include detailed environmental surveys, air quality and noise impact assessments and traffic modelling. A further consultation will take place when the detailed scheme is available in 2018.
The Secretary of State conceeded it isn’t a quick fix, with the new link not due to open until 2027. He told the Kent Messenger “The problems are getting worse and I wish I could wave a magic wand and get it sorted now, but it’s a massive project and it will take time to deliver."
You can stay up to date on the project’s progress at www.lower-thames-crossing.co.uk