Lorry Park off the M20

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rov1200 | 15:39 Thu 06th Jan 2011 | Motoring
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It is proposed to create a 70 acre holding park for when lorries are unable to use the cross channel ferries. This will cost £35m. Currently they sit on the M20 and can impede other traffic.

Why have not considered building an extra lane on the M20 round about this holding area? This could be used at all times and not just in a crisis. I'm not sure how many miles £35m would provide for.


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Cost estimated at 25 million per mile of 3 lane motorway so you'd probably get about 2 miles and you'd close down a lot of motorway while doing it and have to widen all the bridges and the compulsory purchases would get much more complex.

Doesn't sound a winner to me
And nor, according to the Department of Transport, is the proposed lorry park.

Yesterday it was announced that funding for the scheme had been refused. So the poor old motorist (contributing a couple of hundred quid a year in Road Fund Licence and about 85p per litre of fuel) once again has to put up and shut up.

I've tried to negotiate the M20 during "Operation Stack" (I think the Calais fisherman had blockaded the port because one of their number had been refused a 200% increase in State handouts, or something like that). It was not a pleasant experience and to use two lanes of a major motorway to park lorries (for that is what they do) is nothing short of an outrage.
Op Stack is a nightmare for those of us who live in Dover and who have to use the M20 on a regular basis. The problem with some proposals is that they are on sites of special scientific interest, or the land is earmarked for other use. Dover Harbour Board is planning a lorry holding park on the old Hovercraft terminal, but it's not big enough for the hundreds of artics who are stacked up way back to Leeds Castle when there is a serious holdup. Combined with the fact that the other route into Dover - the M2/A2, is still single lane on part of the road into Dover, and we have gridlock. We need a lorry park, and soon.
makes you wonder what redundant port land or industrial land could be used closer to London or the M25 such as in all the 'crap' land around Staines......
There is a fairly new small Henry Boot service station on the M20 between Folkestone and Ashford, but it has very few HGV bays and is not ideal for drivers who need to sleep up, either, as soon as they get off the boat, because they are out of hours. Many of the laybys have now been blocked so trucks can't park up there either. It's very difficult for drivers who need to park and can't - the trucking facilities in this country are pretty dire compared with the facilities on the continent - and drivers working over their hours are dangerous. A decently appointed lorry park in Kent would be welcomed by many - but what seems to be proposed from time to time is a giant slab of concrete, only to take Op Stack off the M20.
As one who has been 'stacked' many times due to the whims of our French friends(!), you have obviously not seen the M20 when it is stacked rov. An extra lane (or use of the hard shoulder) would be a waste of time as it just doesn't hold enough trucks. The only solutions are to carry on as at present (which doesn't really help anyone..truckers, residents or people trying to do ordinary deliveries to Dover area), build a holding facility (which would have to be at least 50% bigger than anyone thinks, otherwise when its full you still have to close the M20 to stack on), or invade France! It is a [email protected] situation which helps no one and is usually down to half a dozen French fishermen who think they are the most important beings on Earth. Onward to Paris!!!
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Although the truckers deserve some sympathy I am thinking mostly of the non-truckers who need to travel without being caught in a logjam. A third southbound lane will mean non truckers could get through.
How often are truckers held up on the M20 going to the port? If its only occasionally why take more land that will sit idle for long periods?

If you take the A14 in cambridgeshire their is a daily logjam of HGVs. This could be alleviated by building a third lane West of Cambridge. Then everyone could travel freely.
You already have parking lots at motorway service stations but the drivers and companies are too tight fisted to pay out.

Do you thin a parking lot near Dover will be free to use? Drivers will find laybys etc before they reached the parking lot.
Its not practical to keep the M way open rov. Trucks are usually parked on either side and leave the centre open fo emergency access etc. Sometimes 'burger vans' or vans from Sally Army etc come along with tea etc and if it is a well foreseen hold up, there are sometimes portaloos about. As the M way is effectively a closed area, people wander about, which would not be a safe environment. I agree, it must be a right pain for all the locals...I can understand this, but there is no easy way out. Your comparison to the A14 is not really the same thing; that is just traffic. I agree, it should be at least 3 lane and this is down to the design engineers etc. Before I became an owner/operator HGV driver I was a Civil Engineer building roads etc. I was on the A42 from Appleby Magna to just north of Ashby de la Zouch. From Birmingham to Appleby the road is the M42 (albeit a 2 lane) and as I was on the contractors staff (who actually build the road) I asked the consultants why the road was being downgraded from M way to A road. "Ah well", they said. "The computer models say there isn't enough traffic on the road to warrant it being a M way". So I said, well of course there is no doesn't go anywhere yet! As soon as it hits the M1 this road will be chocablock...and it is!! The consultants, highways agency and government (whatever colour) seem hell bent on ruining the road system in this country for everyone...because most of them haven't got an ounce of common sense!!
There is an answer, although been off the rat race for a while but still hold my crap Licence, pre warn drivers that are in the Dart ford area of the stack, HGVs going across should be parked within an area with WC Facilities & parked in an order of their arrival to their departure, this can be done using the so-called intelligence of the road traffic, the parking starting over the Dart ford crossing en-route to Dover! Stupid? think about it.

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