'The scheme will bring a huge range of benefits': Third crossing nears key milestone
PUBLISHED: 10:22 04 October 2019 | UPDATED: 10:22 04 October 2019
A decision on whether to build a long-awaited third crossing as part of a nationally significant project will be known in the next few weeks.
The progress of a third crossing over Lake Lothing in Lowestoft is approaching a crucial stage, and behind the scenes work is continuing to ensure that construction will be ready to go in the new year.
The new Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps, will decide on whether to grant or refuse development consent for the much-needed crossing to be built - with a final decision to be known in early December.
Waveney MP Peter Aldous said: "By early December we should receive the planning decision to build the bridge from the new Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps.
"The final stage of the planning process, the examination period, concluded in June and the panel from the Government's Planning Inspectorate have presented their report to the Secretary of State.
"During the examination period a compelling case was presented to the panel, who also heard from other supporters of the project.
"I believe that the case is robust, especially with the support from the local community."
Mr Aldous said that at an event at OrbisEnergy Centre in Lowestoft in June, more than 100 people heard how their businesses could be involved in the supply chain for the project as they were given an update on the progress of the crossing.
Mr Aldous said: "There has also been activity in local schools and over the last few months Nexus Engineering have been visiting Year 5 pupils at a number of primary schools in the Lowestoft area to tell them all about the Third Crossing project.
"They have also been asked to think of a name, which reflects either the heritage, the present or future of the town, the local geography or makes a link to something local or references the shape of the bridge.
"A judging panel will choose the winning entry later this year."
Mr Aldous added: "The scheme will bring a huge range of benefits to Lowestoft and the wider region.
"Although we are now waiting for the Secretary of State's decision, the team at Suffolk County Council are still hard at work on the final detailed design drawings and continuing ground investigation work, to ensure that we are ready to proceed as soon as we get the green light."