Government urged to prioritise Lower Thames Crossing ahead of Paramount Park development
PUBLISHED: 17:32 29 June 2015 | UPDATED: 17:39 29 June 2015
Business community warns of jams otherwise
The Lower Thames Crossing needs to be made a priority by the government to avoid the Paramount theme park causing traffic problems, a group of businesspeople have warned.
Businessmen and women from across the area discussed the plans for the park on the Swanscombe peninsula – which they support - at an open forum hosted by law firm Thomson Snell and Passmore in Gravesend.
But a spokesman from the law firm added: “It was noted that those responsible for the park’s planning and implementation must take into consideration all aspects of the locality and its people.
“It was also agreed that there is a need for greater public awareness of the potential benefits of the project.
“Concerns were raised about the inevitable increase in pressure on the region’s already congested road network. The site expects to receive an average of 45,000 visitors per day, rising to 96,500 on peak days.
“A proposed solution to this would be if the third Thames crossing was pushed further up the Government’s agenda, which would ease traffic on and around the Dartford crossing and increase the likelihood of a Crossrail extension to Swanscombe.”
Only a quarter of those at the event had been to any of the consultation events hosted by London Paramount – even though all of them said they expected it to affect their business.
The consensus was that the park would help to regenerate town centres in Medway, Dartford and Gravesend, as visitors would be spending money in the towns and may need hotel accommodation.
But there was also concern about pressure on schools and hospitals.
Kamal Aggarwal, head of Thomson Snell and Passmore’s Thames Gateway office, said: “It was an excellent forum, at which businesses demonstrated genuine positivity about the developments, but also raised key issues that those involved in the project will need to give serious consideration to.
“The consensus is that this represents an enormous opportunity not only for the Thames Gateway but for the wider south east economy.”
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