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Regeneration of Medway at risk without a new Thames Crossing, council warns

09 July 2013
by Alan McGuinness

The Dartford Crossing

The Dartford Crossing

The regeneration of Medway will be put at risk if a new Thames Crossing isn’t built, according to the council.

Medway Council has said there is a "strong case" for a new crossing and that two of the three options proposed "merit further consideration".

The three options put forward by the Department for Transport are:

Option A: A crossing at the site of the existing A282 Dartford-Thurrock crossing that links the M25 north of the river in Essex with the M25 south of the Thames in Kent.

Option B: Connecting the A2 Swanscombe Peninsula with the A1089 in Essex.

Option C: Connecting the M3 with the A13 and the M25 between junctions 29 and 30.

Medway Council has said options A and C should be looked at further, while option B should be discounted.

Option A is the cheapest, with a price tag of between £1.2 billion and £1.8 billion, while the third option could cost up to £5 billion.

The issue is due to be discussed by the Conservative cabinet at a meeting today (Tuesday).

Map showing some of the options for a lower Thames crossing

Map showing some of the options for a lower Thames crossing

A report prepared for the meeting details the council’s response to the DFT’s consultation on the crossing.

"Medway Council agrees that there is a strong case to increase road-based river crossing capacity in the Lower Thames area," the report says.

"The existing crossing is already operating at over its design capacity and there are significant delays for traffic on a daily basis affecting businesses based in Medway."

Option C, or a variant of it would benefit the Towns the most, the authority claims.

Although the council has concerns about the potential environmental impacts, as the route goes through green belt land.

Four years ago the Department for Transport considered two other options – a link from the M2 to Canvey Island in Essex and a crossing at the Isle of Grain to Southend.

These were ruled out by the government, and the council has asked for a guarantee that these options won’t be considered again.

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