AECOM has started work on a major programme of ground investigations and surveys along the 14.5 mile route of the Lower Thames Crossing. The firm’s work follows Perfect Circle’s appointment by Highways England to the major road upgrade scheme, procured via the Scape National Built Environment Consultancy Services (BECS) framework. Perfect Circle is a consortium of Pick Everard, Gleeds and AECOM.
The team is undertaking a range of investigations for the project across sites in Kent, Thurrock and Essex to gather information about the ground and groundwater conditions along the route to help inform planning, design and construction. The investigations will include tests under the Thames where the proposed tunnel will be built. A key part of the collaborative delivery of the project, extensive community and stakeholder liaison is underway to minimise the project’s impact on the environment and local communities.
Patrick Cox, AECOM lead for the Lower Thames Crossing ground investigations programme, said: “Our complex programme of ground investigations is a vital step forward for this transformational project, providing Highways England with critical information on the ground conditions along the route to support planning and design. With such a large team delivering the investigations, we’re working closely and collaboratively with the client, their team, our partners and sub-consultants to achieve the highest benchmarks in terms of health and safety, collaboration and technical quality.”
Victoria Brambini, managing director of Perfect Circle, said: “The Lower Thames Crossing will improve transport connections across the country by providing more than 90% additional road capacity across the river in the east of London, while boosting the economy and creating thousands of new jobs, apprenticeships and training opportunities – this is an excellent example of social value.”
Mark Robinson, Scape Group chief executive, said: “It is vital that our infrastructure is fully equipped to facilitate sustainable economic activity. It is encouraging to see government responding with projects such as the Lower Thames Crossing. This is an excellent example of a cohesive strategy that will ease congestion, encourage regeneration and boost connectivity in the area. I’m always delighted to see projects of this scale benefit companies of all shapes and sizes. Perfect Circle, supported by a 27,000 strong supply chain, has a vast pool of expertise that will welcome the opportunity to work on a project of this nature.”
The Lower Thames Crossing is one of the government’s top 40 infrastructure projects in its National Infrastructure Plan and would increase road capacity across the Thames, improve journey times along parts of the A127 and M20 and cut congestion on approach roads to the Dartford Crossing. The new crossing will boost local, regional and national economies, and form an essential part of the UK’s transport infrastructure.
AECOM is working in collaboration with Highways England’s technical partner LTC Cascade, as well as key sub-consultants Geotechnical Engineering, Socotec, Structural Soils, Soil Engineering and Fugro to deliver the project.