Original report here
One sentence in the red book on page 72 of the red book.
4.97 Thames Estuary – Drawing on the Thames Estuary Commission report, the government is supporting a study to develop options and consult the local area on a Great Thames Park.
Thats its, nothing on a Kent-Essex rail link for example (which could be done as part of the LTC tunnelling) why? I suspect because the report panel was top heavy and included the like of Lord Foster and Nick Roberts of Atkins who included rewarmed pipedream ideas from Boris Island, like a second Thames barrier (which the GLA rightly say is unnecessary) had the report been done within the NIC formally it would have been far more hard headed and included more specific infra proposals. Also May is known to hold grudges forever and so anything which smacks of Hesiltine or Boris is not likely to be judged a strategic priority whilst she is around.
The study will completely and for the better transform the way the JSP for South Essex is being done. No longer can it be a series of growth ‘fuzzy felt planning’ blobs, it will have to be landscape led with a natural capital plan built in as part of the vision, as it is for example in the new approach to the Oxford Cambridge Arc. This is much better as no strategic growth location in South Essex can work at all unless it is landscape led and design led; however this will need a refresh in the skill set , project management and political leadership priorities here as this is not a frontloaded priority at all at the moment. (as neither oddly is infrastructure or transport work). Yet another set back for South Essex, do they have the political strength and unity of vision to succeed with such limited government support?
So the the study – expect to see large areas restored as ‘Fanns‘ old Essex for fen, new Salt Marsh , Mire and Carr, on the hillsides and tops broadleaved woodland. Strategic growth locations will have to wrap around them, which is how it should be.
Now what about Kent?