Agenda and draft minutes

Lower Thames Crossing Task Force - Monday, 20th June, 2022 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 2, CO3, Civic Offices, New Road, Grays, RM17 6SL

Contact: Lucy Tricker, Senior Democratic Services Officer  Email: direct.democracy@thurrock.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Nomination of Chair

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Minutes:

Councillor Fraser Massey was elected as Chair of the Lower Thames Crossing Task Force for the 2022/23 municipal year.

2.

Nomination of Vice-Chair

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Councillor John Kent was elected as Vice-Chair of the Lower Thames Crossing Task Force for the 2022/23 municipal year.

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 220 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the Lower Thames Crossing Task Force meeting held on 14 March 2022.

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Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting from the Lower Thames Crossing Task Force held on 14 March 2022 were approved as a true and correct record.

4.

Items of Urgent Business pdf icon PDF 272 KB

To receive additional items that the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency, in accordance with Section 100B (4) (b) of the Local Government Act 1972.

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Minutes:

The Chair explained that there was one item of urgent business regarding a letter that had been sent from the Council to the Treasury.

The Assistant Director Regeneration and Place Delivery stated that the Council had written to the Treasury as the value for money for the proposed Lower Thames Crossing (LTC) scheme had appeared to decrease, and the Council were requesting that this opportunity to modify the scheme to improve its value for money be explored more fully before Development Consent Order (DCO) submission. The Chair welcomed the letter and felt it was detailed and clearly set out the Council’s position. The Vice-Chair echoed these comments and felt that the best way to ensure that this scheme did not go ahead was to prove that it did not provide value for money. The Thames Crossing Action Group (TCAG) Representative thanked officers for their hard work on the letter and felt that it echoed the points that had been made by the Task Force over recent years.

The Chair reminded residents that the consultation was due to close at 11.59pm on Monday 20 June 2022 and urged residents to fill out the consultation.

5.

Declaration of Interests

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There were no interests declared.

6.

LTC Consultation Response (to follow)

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The Assistant Director Regeneration and Place Delivery explained that the document would outline the Council’s response to the consultation and that it was agreed that it would be submitted to Full Council. He stated that National Highways (NH) had allowed the Council until 4 July 2022 to allow the response to pass through governance processes before submission.

The Senior Consultant Stantec stated that the consultation response was divided into four sections. He explained that the first section was a 10-page summary document and introduction, which would be presented to Full Council. He stated that the second section dealt with prematurity and adequacy of consultation. He stated that the team had considered the LRC consultation was premature as the Council had only just received the traffic modelling data; and no Health Impact Assessment (HIA) or air quality and noise assessment results had been received to understand impacts or mitigation. He stated that officers had also deemed the consultation as inadequate as there had been no consultation events in Chadwell St Mary or South Ockendon, and the consultation had only been for a period of five and a half weeks, rather than eight weeks, which was preferred by the Council and provided by NH in the previous consultation. The Senior Consultant Stantec explained that section three of the response provided a summary of technical issues, and section four dealt with the response to the 26 changes outlined in the consultation, of which 15 were in Thurrock. The Senior Consultant Stantec explained that this section responded to areas such as the Community Involvement Consultation response; modelling changes; changes to the A13/Orsett Cock junction; Tilbury Fields; Tilbury Operational Access; utilities; cyclists and horse-riders (WCH) rights of way; landscaping around the A13 Junction and North Road; air quality and noise impacts; land and property compensation; nitrogen impacts and mitigation; health, equalities and wellbeing; and climate change and decarbonisation.

The Chair thanked officers for their hard work in preparing the Council’s response and asked if officers could submit the response as soon as possible for Full Council, to ensure Members could read and make appropriate comment. The Chair queried how many changes to the scheme had been proposed since 2018. The Senior Consultant Stantec replied that most changes were outlined in the various consultation ‘Guides’, but approximately 100-150 changes had been made since 2018, with approimately 20-30 of these categorised as significant changes. The Assistant Director Regeneration and Place Delivery added that many residents appeared confused by the ad-hoc nature of the consultations and  were unaware of the full scheme and its impact, and asked if Members could help ensure that their residents understood the potential impacts relevant to them.

The Chair queried the raised areas of land around the A13. The Senior Consultant Stantec stated that this was outlined in the Guide on page 65, but listed areas such as along Stifford Clays Road, where the earth bund would rise approximately 15m above existing ground level; and alongside the existing A13 where the earth bund  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Work Programme pdf icon PDF 99 KB

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The Chair stated that NH would be invited to the July meeting, which could be an in-person meeting, and the Health Impact Assessment would be added as a verbal update to every future meeting.