MP calls on Thurrock Council to change position on Lower Thames crossing

Thurrock MP Jackie Doyle-Price has revealed  that a survey she held in the run up to the general election has revealed that half of those who responded are content with the proposals for the Lower Thames crossing.

Last week’s Budget confirmed that £6.8bn has been made available for the crossing.

Mrs Doyle-Price said: “As you know this is not the route I wanted.  I believe Route 4 would have been better for Thurrock.

“More people in Thurrock favoured Route 4, but this is a national policy decision and without the support of Thurrock Council I could not persuade Highways England that this route would be preferable.

She added: “I understand why Thurrock Council was not prepared to take a position. While residents at the west of the borough welcome a crossing to the east, residents at the east are understandably opposed.

“Everyone wants infrastructure but no one wants it near them.

“However, that reluctance to take a position has set us back. Thurrock really should have been more forthright about opposing further expansion at the current crossing. A tunnel which starts ahead of Junction 2 and comes out north of J30 will have no effect on the volumes of traffic which join and leave at those junctions. It is that traffic which causes congestion on Thurrock’s roads.

“To tackle the congestion on Thurrock’s roads we need an alternative route that will build resilience in the local road network.

“We all know that this crossing is coming. It is important now that Thurrock Council engages with Highways England to make sure we get the most we can from it.

“It is time for Thurrock Council to change tack. To stop saying no to any crossing and to engage with Highways England to get the best for Thurrock.”

Mick Ferris

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