The A226 London Road and A206 St Clements Way roundabout junction is located on a key strategic route between Dartford and Gravesend and also provides access to the Bluewater and Crossways retail/commercial developments and links to the Dartford Crossing. St Clements Way also forms a key part of the Fastrack bus service and provides direct access to Greenhithe Station.
The purpose of the scheme is to reduce traffic congestion, particularly during peak hours and to improve overall journey time reliability. This will be achieved by increasing the capacity of the St Clements Way/London Road roundabout. The provision of new bus lanes in each direction on St Clements Way will also improve existing bus journey times and assist the planned expansion of the Fastrack bus service.
The site is very constrained by residential and commercial buildings and this has limited the footprint of the scheme to existing highway land or land which is under KCC’s ownership or control. This includes a strip of land that has been secured through a Section 106 agreement for the adjacent development of St Clements Lakes to the southwest of the London Road roundabout and an area of land that has been retained by KCC from the original construction of St Clements Way located to the west of St Clements Way.
The improvements will include an enlarged roundabout at the existing A226 London Road/A206 St Clements Way junction and a new bus lane in each direction between the London Road and Crossways Boulevard roundabouts.
A feasibility study into different junctions options was undertaken, and options considered included the following:
· Option A - Enlarged standard circular roundabout
· Option B - Fully signalised junction
· Option C - Enlarged oval shaped roundabout
· Option D - Signalised oval shaped roundabout
An earlier design option that had been considered by KCC in 2003 was the provision of a low headroom underpass for cars only. This was looked at as part of this assessment but was not considered viable due to the presence of a high water table, the length of underpass required would exceed the space available, construction costs and buildability issues.
The findings of the feasibility study showed that Option C - the enlarged oval roundabout gave the best results in achieving the increased capacity required to deal with current congestion issues and allow for future growth. Although predicted to be over capacity in 2035 this option presents the best overall balance for an improvement within a very constrained site and it is hoped that by 2035 other highway improvements in the area will have come forward to alleviate future pressure on the junction.
· How the proposed decision meets the objectives of ‘Increasing Opportunities, Improving Outcomes: Kent County Council’s Strategic Statement (2015-2020)’
The scheme supports the objectives by reducing congestion, improving the highway infrastructure to provide more reliable journey times and improved public transport links and accessibility, to support Kent business growth and encourage economic activity to benefit the local and wider communities.
Decision type: Key
Reason Key: Expenditure or savings of more than £1m;
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Division affected: Dartford East; Swanscombe and Greenhithe;
Notice of proposed decision first published: 27/04/2016
Department: Growth, Environment & Transport
Contact: Serena Stallon, Business Operations Officer 03000 419377 and 03000 413479 Email: email@example.com Tel: 01622 694969.
Financial Implications (inc. budget ref)
The overall estimated cost is £8.5m. The allocation from the Single Local Growth Fund is £4.2m. A major scheme business case is required to be submitted to the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP) for approval before the funding can be released. This is planned for submission to SELEP during 2016. The remaining £4.3m is to be provided by the Kent Thameside Strategic Transport Programme (STIP) funding allocation, which is derived from developers S106 contributions and HCA funding.
There are no legal implications associated with this scheme.
An initial equalities impact assessment has been carried out for the scheme. This has identified the need to further consider the provisions for the elderly and those with disabilities associated with the positioning of controlled crossing facilities. This will be addressed as part of the scheme development. In addition those travellers who regularly use or rely exclusively on public transport should experience more reliable journey times by the proposed improvements at the London Road roundabout and the introduction of additional bus lanes.
Initial discussions have been held with officers of Dartford Borough Council during the feasibility stage of the design. A public engagement exercise is planned to be carried out with stakeholders and the local community following development of the outline design of the scheme.
The Environment and Transport Cabinet Committee will receive a report and discuss this matter on 4 May.
The electoral divisions affected are: Swanscombe and Greenhithe –Local Member, Peter Harman and Dartford East – Local Member, Penny Cole.
Initial views have been sought from the Members for Swanscombe and Greenhithe and Dartford East. Comments received will be shared with the Cabinet Member at the appropriate time.
Financial implications: Barry Stiff Project Manager, Major Projects 03000 419377 firstname.lastname@example.org Roger Wilkin Director of Highways, Transportation & Waste 03000 413479 email@example.com
Legal implications: 16/00029