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Conservative leader Jeremy Kite urges government to press on with third Thames Crossing

The government has been urged to press on with the controversial plan for a third Thames Crossing despite growing concerns over the costs and the timetable for construction slipping.

Dartford council’s Conservative leader, Jeremy Kite, said the case for the crossing was compelling and despite delays and a fresh consultation, it would ultimately be welcomed by Dartford residents.

Speaking on the latest Kent Politics Podcast, he said: “I think the location is genius, it is actually away from Gravesham and is in an area where population is light; of course there will be effects on people; but they also have the benefits of great design. They can build a brand new crossing with all the mitigations that Dartford can only dream of in terms of environmental benefits.”

“My message to my government is ‘for heaven’s sake, just get this underway; let’s start. Somehow we manage to trip ourselves up with endless consultations; of course public opinion is important [but] now we are going back and consulting again.”

Cllr Jeremy Kite
Cllr Jeremy Kite

On the podcast, Cllr Kite also criticised the delays and said he was a strong advocate of the scheme.

He also praised the development of Ebbsfleet Valley, saying: “My reckoning is that people don't want to see growth but the truth is that the economy in the southeast is growing and people need housing. If you are going to create a community, you have to make sure it is a good one and it's also a privilege actually if you get it right.”

How a previous Thames Crossing plan was expected to look. Credit: Highways England
How a previous Thames Crossing plan was expected to look. Credit: Highways England

“My job is to make sure that growth does not overwhelm people and to make sure we get the hospitals, the police and the infrastructure we need; people are very quick to tell me when we fail to do that.

“I don't know why it has taken so long; for the Victorians it would have been a no-brainer.”

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