Our approach to…
Our countryside is home to some amazing plants, animals and habitats, and many of them are protected by law. Knowing exactly where they are is vital to making sure we protect them. We are carrying out detailed surveys to understand wildlife populations and movements, to identify how best to avoid or reduce effects on the protected areas, riverside marshes and the river bed. The preferred route and the choice of a bored tunnel was carefully chosen to minimise the impact on these special areas. For more information on ecology surveys, view our fact sheet.
We are carrying out detailed air quality assessments and more detailed noise modelling. We will develop solutions, where appropriate, to reduce the effects of traffic noise such as using low noise road surfaces or keeping the road as low as possible within the landscape to use natural screening and cuttings.
Over the coming months we’ll also be carrying out surveys to find out about the ground conditions, the archaeology and the topography of the area. You might see some of our survey team or our equipment when you’re out and about in the area. We carry out surveys in lots of different ways from walking across the land and looking for animals, taking water samples, drilling bore holes or digging trenches to look at the ground or even using a helicopter or a drone to map the contours of the land. Our surveys will continue over the next two years to make sure we have as much information as possible to help us make the right decisions about the design of the crossing.
We have also now submitted the Environmental Scoping Report to the Planning Inspectorate as part of the Development Consent Order pre-application process.
… Working with communities
We will be a responsible developer and work closely with local authorities and communities to help maximise the opportunities the new crossing could bring.
Our dedicated land and property team is engaging directly with affected land and property owners to help them understand the impact of our proposals and their rights.
We are looking at the land needed for construction and access routes and how we might phase the construction work. This will help us plan measures to reduce potential impacts.
We will use construction techniques that minimise disruption. This includes the bored tunnel method, which will minimise impacts on the riverside marshes and riverbed, and offsite construction, which enables faster progress and use of the river for transporting materials.
The Lower Thames Crossing will unlock opportunities for regional and national economic growth while offering new connections and better journeys. The new crossing will strengthen and connect local communities and improve access to jobs, housing, leisure and retail facilities on both sides of the river. We’re working closely with local authorities and local communities to understand how we can help turn those potential benefits into reality.