Dartford Crossing alternative bridge decision is delayed by the Department for Transport

News Posted 16/12/13
Government drops one of three options for the Dartford Crossing relief bridge, which residents and businesses have been demanding for years.

A much-awaited decision on the provision of another bridge to relieve the overstretched Dartford Crossing has been delayed by the government.

In a statement this week, the Department for Transport has confirmed that it is to drop one of the three proposed solutions- (option B) that would connect the Swanscombe Peninsula with the A1089.

This has been rejected on the basis that it is believed this would have a negative impact on trade.

According to the government, it will make a decision between the first (option A, upgrading the present crossing) or option (C) which would connect the M2 with the A13 and the M25 between Junction 29 and 30.

The latter also includes the potential of a further link, widening the A229 between the M2 and M20.

Businesses and residents have expressed a huge level of concern surrounding the volumes of traffic building up at the present Dartford Crossing – which are estimated to have resulted in a loss of millions to the region’s economy due to lost travelling time.

The government had originally pledged the crossing would be free once it had been paid for once the existing tolls had covered the cost of the build – a policy that it has now reversed. Residents campaign groups have since been formed by residents, which have highlighted the considerable traffic problems that have blighted the area in recent years.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “We have had over 5,700 responses to the consultation and we have carefully considered each of then. Ruling out the least attractive option now gives some clarity to residents and businesses.”

A decision on the plans for an alternative crossing is expected to be made in the middle of 2014.

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