Road projects

Utility Trial Trenching surveys on the Lower Thames Crossing
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Utility Trial Trenching surveys on the Lower Thames Crossing
March 3, 2020
Highways England team in discussion at Countess roundabout

As part of the ongoing surveys for the Lower Thames Crossing, we are now going to start our Utility Trial Trenching (UTT).

This phase of works will begin from this month and will go on until August. Details of the activities and what you can expect can be found below.

These surveys will help us plan utility diversions where they would be required to build the Lower Thames Crossing and will help us to improve our proposals and to develop our application for the Development Consent Order (DCO).

We will be carrying out the works using a vacuum excavator. At times, we will also use hand-digging to ensure safety of the services. The vacuum excavator uses compressed air to loosen or agitate the ground, which can then be removed using the vacuum on the machine.  The two types of methods we will be using are:

Trial Holes – The vacuum excavator is used on both the road and the walkways where an operative will park the excavator in a safe location to carry out the work. If the work is being done on the road, there will be traffic management installed, including full closures or lane closures with temporary traffic lights in place (the detail is outlined below). Where access is needed onto the walkway, a diversion will be in place for pedestrians. Each locations will take between 1 and 3 shifts to complete. We will be doing the majority of the works using this method.

Non-invasive Investigations – In addition to the trial holes, we will be identifying utility features, surveying them and opening chambers. Where possible, these will be completed under the traffic management for the trial hole works, however, in some cases we may need additional traffic management to complete these.

What to expect

Our priority is to carry out this programme of work in a way that will have the smallest possible impact on the community. We have been and are continuing to work with all the relevant Local Authorities to reduce any disruption that may be caused and to obtain the necessary approvals.

  • The works may cause some disruption, but we will ensure that we put mitigation measures in place in order to minimise noise.Due to the nature of the works, there will be flashing lights which are used on our works vehicles for the safety of both the workforce and the road users.
  • All access to properties will be maintained throughout the duration of the works.
  • At times, there will be lane closures with two-way traffic lights in place. This is required for the safety of both the work force and road users.
  • Where it is not possible for us to carry out the works under lane closures, we will have to install road closures. These will be done at night-time only with a fully signed diversion in place. Additional communications will be sent to local residents regarding specific road closures.
  • The working hours will take place during day time between 9.30am and 3pm, Monday to Friday or carried out at night-time in high traffic areas, between 8pm and 6am, Monday to Friday.

What to expect

Trial Holes

Kent

What to expect

Duration

Valley Drive

Trial holes.

2 days – Day-time

A2 (Wrotham Rd to M2 J1)

Trial holes –  lane closures.

 3 weeks – Night-time

Henhurst Rd

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

1 week – Night-time

Lower Higham Rd

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

1 week – Night-time

A226 Gravesend Rd

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

1 week – Night-time

Lower Higham Rd

Trial holes –  full road closure.

1 week – Night-time

A2 (Wrotham Rd to M2 J1)

Various Slip Road Closures with traffic diverted to the next junction where road users can exit and return on the opposite carriageway.

10 days – Night-time

Thong Lane

Trial holes – road closure with diversion in place via Gravesend Road, A289 and the A2. 3 shifts during nights.

3 days – Night-time

 

 

Non-Invasive excavations

Kent

What to expect

Duration

Gravesend Rd

Lane closures with temporary traffic signals.

1 day – Night-time

Brewers Rd Lane closures with temporary traffic signals. 1 day– Night-time

 

Trial Holes 

Essex / Havering

What to expect

Duration

Stanford Rd

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

1 week – Night-time

Baker Street

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

3 days– Day-time

Rectory Rd

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

3 days – Night-time

Buckingham Hill Rd

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

3 days – Night-time

Heath Road

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

3 days– Day-time

M25 J30-28

Trial holes –  lane closures

1 week – Night-time

B187 St Marys Ln

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

1 week – Night-time

Fort Rd/Gun Hill

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

3 days – Night-time

Ockendon Rd

Trial holes –  lane closures with temporary traffic lights.

7 days – Night-time

A13/A1089 Junction

Trial holes –  slip road closure with traffic diverted to the next junction to return on the opposite carriageway.

3 days – Night-time

B186 North Rd

Trial holes – full road closure.

2 weeks – Night-time

Brentwood Rd

Trial holes – full road closure.

3 days – Night-time

Hoford Rd

Trial holes – full road closure.

3 days – Night-time

A127 @ J29

Trial holes – full road closure.

2 days – Night-time

Princess Margaret Rd

Trial holes – full road closure.

3 days – Night-time

Station Rd

Trial holes – full road closure.

5 days – Night-time

Muckingford Rd

Trial holes – full road closure.

3 days – Night-time

Folkes Ln

Trial holes – full road closure.

3 days – Night-time

 

Non-Invasive excavations

Essex / Havering

What to expect

Duration

B186 North Rd

Lane closures with temporary traffic signals.

1 day – Night-time

Stifford Clays Rd

Lane closures with temporary traffic signals.

1 day– Night-time

Hornsby Ln

Road closure.

1 day – Night-time

  • Utility Trial Trenching surveys 2

  • Utility Trial Trenching surveys 3

  • Utility Trial Trenching surveys 4

  • Utility Trial Trenching surveys 5

  • Utility Trial Trenching surveys 6

 

Media enquiries

 

For Lower Thames Crossing media enquiries, journalists and other media representatives should contact Highways England’s press office

 

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