How to get Involved in the Lower Thames Crossing Planning Review process
Following on from our previous posts concerning the detailed examination of National Highway’s Development Consent Order (DCO) application for the Lower Thames Crossing (LTC), below is some information on how to register as an Interested Party.
National Highways formally submitted their Planning Application for the LTC to the Planning Inspectorate at the end of October and the Inspectorate accepted the draft Development Consent Order (DCO) for Examination on the 28th November 2022. There follows a period when representations by individuals and organisations can be made during the Examination period.
Details about how to register to become an Interested Party have now been published:
The Planning Inspectorate opened the period for stakeholders and members of the public to register to become an Interested Party by making a Relevant Representation. A Relevant Representation is a written summary of your views on the Lower Thames Crossing. You can register to become an Interested Party on the Planning Inspectorate’s website until 24 February 2023.
The Planning Inspectorate has published a document with answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the pre-examination stage and registering as an Interested Party that you might find useful.
If you are unable to complete a registration form online and would like to register your interest, please call the helpline on 0303 444 5000 or email the project mailbox, as found on the project page, for advice on how to register.
Interested Parties are invited to a Preliminary Meeting to consider how the application will be Examined. Before the Meeting, the Examining Authority will provide a draft Examination Timetable plus its initial assessment of principal issues. The Examination starts the day after the Preliminary Meeting and can last up to 6 months.
During the six month Examination, Interested Parties will be invited to attend the Hearings (Issue Specific and Open Floor), provide written responses to the Examiners Questions and written representations. There is no cross examination process in DCO Hearings and the process is focussed on the written submissions.