HIGHWAYS England has opened a public consultation for the Lower Thames Crossing but only on Option C.
It would appear that Thurrock residents do have a choice, however, they appear to be three variations of Option C.
The only mention of Option A (a crossing close to the Dartford bridge and tunnel) is a small location reference on the map.
Once in Essex, the roads split into three options for how it joins up with the M25.
1. One goes via West Tilbury.
2. The second cuts around Orsett Heath and both join up at the A13 before going north west by South Ockendon and creating a new junction on the M25.
3. The third meets the A13 nearer to Stanford-le-Hope, and goes north to the A127 and junction 29 of the M25.
Highways England senior project manager, Martin Potts said: “Deciding where the new crossing should go is a vitally important decision, and we’ve been working hard to identify solutions that strike the best balance between improving journeys, getting value for money and managing environmental impact.
"Our assessments have shown that Location C provides double the economic benefits of Location A as well as a clear alternative route to the Dartford Crossing, reducing congestion and improving resilience of the road network. And by choosing a tunnel rather than a bridge we can minimise the effects of the new road on the environment.
Another crossing will help ease congestion at Dartford
“There are important choices to be made. As well as inviting comments from the public about our recommendations, we have identified three routes for the new road to the north of the river and two routes south of the river. We welcome views on them all.
“This consultation is your chance to have your say on a once-in-a-generation, multi-billion pound investment that will have wide ranging effects for decades. I encourage anyone who would like to find out more to check out the consultation materials or come and see us at one of the public exhibitions we’ll be hosting.”
There will be 24 public exhibitions, held at venues across Kent and Essex. All responses will be taken into consideration before a final decision is made by the Government later this year.
The consultation will close on Thursday, March 24.
The proposals – copies of consultation materials, maps and questionnaires will soon be available at www.lower-thames-crossing.co.uk.