Proposals for a £1.5bn Crossrail connection to Ebbsfleet have received heavyweight backing from an influential industry group.
The Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission confirmed that an extension of the Crossrail line from Abbey Wood into Kent is a priority for the region, as revealed by New Civil Engineer earlier this month.
The board, led by National Infrastructure Commission chairman John Armitt, has called on the government to provide £20M for project development and said it could be delivered by 2029.
The government will respond to the report, including any formal endorsement of its recommendations, within six months.
London City Airport expansion and Docklands Light Railway extension to Thamesmead are also essential projects for the region, the 2050 vision report said.
A multi-modal river crossing east of the Lower Thames Crossing and combined with the second Thames Barrier should be considered and delivered by 2050, the report said.
The commission is supportive of the Lower Thames Crossing, but specified that it should not preclude the future delivery of infrastructure to support rail transport links or autonomous vehicles.
Since it was established in March 2016, The Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission has been working to develop an ambitious vision and delivery plan for North Kent, South Essex and East London up to 2050. Home to 3.8M people, the Thames Estuary is on the doorstep of both London and continental Europe, and has the potential to support growth right across the country.
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