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The Lower Thames Crossing

By Ian Townsend

New road crossing proposed which is designed to improve road capacity and cut journey times- have your say

The Bostik League has been contacted by Highways England in relation to their proposed new Lower Thames Road Crossing. They’ve asked that, as part of the public consultation which has just begun, we bring the details of the scheme to our clubs and supporters so that they can have their say.

The 14.5 mile route connecting Gravesham, Kent and Thurrock, Essex would be a three lane motorway connecting the M2 near Rochester and the M25 in Essex between North and South Ockendon. It would include a 2.4 mile-long tunnel under the Thames between the east of Gravesend and Tilbury – the longest road tunnel in the UK – and, at over 50 feet wide, the third largest bored tunnel in the world. This crossing would apparently halve journey times for those crossing the river via the M25 and Dartford.

Tim Jones, Project Director for Lower Thames Crossing, said: “For too long the Dartford Crossing has been the only way to get across the Thames east of London. It is a vital gateway, but carries more traffic than it was ever designed for and drivers there suffer from regular delays, severing communities and holding back economic growth.

"The Lower Thames Crossing is the most ambitious project of its kind ever in the UK and the biggest single road upgrade since the M25 was completed more than 30 years ago. It would almost double road capacity across the Thames to cut congestion, end the daily delays at the Dartford Crossing and boost the resilience of the whole road network. This consultation is an important opportunity for people to share their views on our proposals and help shape the Lower Thames Crossing."

On the south side of the Thames, the new road will link the tunnel to the A2 and M2 in Kent. On the north side of the river, it will link to the A13 in Thurrock and then junction 29 of the M25 in the London Borough of Havering.

The Lower Thames Crossing will be made up of:
• A 2.4-mile (4km) tunnel
• Approximately 14.5 miles (23km) of new road connecting the tunnel to the existing road network
• 3 lanes in both directions with a maximum speed limit of 70mph
• New structures (including bridges, viaducts and an underpass) along the length of the new road
• Improvements to the M25, A2 and A13, where the Lower Thames Crossing connects to them

There are a number of public consultation events, as follows:

a. Orsett Hall Hotel, Prince Charles Avenue, Orsett, RM16 3HS on Tuesday 16 October from 2pm to 9pm
b. Bluewater Shopping Centre, Bluewater Parkway, Greenhithe, DA9 9ST, on Saturday 20 October from 9am to 9pm, and Sunday 21 October from 11am to 5pm
c. Chalk Parish Hall, Pirrip Close, Gravesend, DA12 2ND, on Monday 22 October from 2pm to 9pm
d. Mick Jagger Centre, Shepherds Lane, Dartford, DA1 2JZ, on Tuesday 23 October from 2pm to 9pm
e. West Horndon Village Hall, Thorndon Avenue, West Horndon, CM13 3TP on Wednesday 24 October from 2pm to 9pm
f. Lakeside Shopping Centre, West Thurrock Way, Grays, RM20 2ZP on Saturday 27 October from 9am to 9pm, and on Sunday 28 October from 11am to 5pm
g. Tilbury Community Association, Civic Square, Tilbury, RM18 8AA on Tuesday 30 October from 2pm to 9pm
h. Cascades Leisure Centre, Thong Lane, Gravesend, DA12 4LG, on Thursday 1 November, from 2pm to 9pm
i. Shorne Village Hall, 16 The Street, Shorne, DA12 3EA, on Saturday 3 November from midday to 6pm
j. Thurrock Civic Hall, Blackshots Lane, Grays, RM16 2JU on Tuesday 6 November from 2pm to 9pm
k. Linford Methodist Church, East Tilbury Road, Linford, SS17 0QQ on Wednesday 14 November from 2pm to 9pm
l. Brandon Groves Community Club, Brandon Groves Avenue, South Ockendon, RM15 6TD on Friday 16 November from 2pm to 9pm
m. The New Windmill Hall, St Mary’s Lane, Upminster, RM14 2QH on Saturday 17 November from midday to 6pm
n. Holiday Inn Basildon, Cranes Farm Road, Waterfront Walk, Festival Leisure Park, Basildon, SS14 3DG on Monday 19 November from 2pm to 9pm
o. Gravesham Civic Centre, Windmill Street, Gravesend, DA12 1AU, on Wednesday 21 November from 2pm to 9pm
p. St Mary Magdalene Church, Church Lane, Upminster, RM14 3QH on Thursday 22 November from 2pm to 9pm
q. Havering College of Further and Higher Education, 42 Ardleigh Green Road, Hornchurch, London, on Monday 26 November from 2pm to 9pm
r. Holiday Inn Brentwood M25 junction 28, Brooke Street, Brentwood, CM14 5NF on Wednesday 28 November from 2pm to 9pm
s. Havering Town Hall, Main Road, Romford, RM1 3BD on Friday 30 November from 2pm to 9pm
t. Doubletree Dartford Bridge Hotel, Masthead Close, Crossways Business Park, Dartford, DA2 6QF, on Monday 3 December from 2pm to 9pm
u. Dover Town Hall, Biggin Street, Dover, CT16 1DL, on Tuesday 4 December, from 2pm to 9pm
v. Rochester Corn Exchange, Northgate, Rochester, ME1 1LS, on Wednesday 5 December, from 2pm to 9pm
w. Chadwell Village Hall, Waterson Road, Chadwell St Mary, RM16 4NX on Friday 7 December from 2pm to 9pm

Visit the Highways England website for more information and to give your views.

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